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Old 02-27-2020, 07:19 AM
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Just shoot the hippos!


Apparently drug kingpin Pablo Escobar liked hippos, and imported some to his home in Columbia. Since his arrest, some have gone wild, where they are thriving.

The linked article discusses plans to address them "in humane ways" such as surgical sterilization. Seriously? Just shoot the damned things.

Why is there any debate? Sure, animal rights and all - but at what cost?
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  #2  
Old 02-27-2020, 07:23 AM
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No shooting hippos!
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Old 02-27-2020, 07:56 AM
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Seriously? Just shoot the damned things.

Why is there any debate?
I suppose it's because the people who live there don't want to shoot them. If they decided to go the shooting route, if sterilization doesn't work, I'd recommend getting a Rich American Douchebag™ to pay top dollar for the opportunity.



And TIL... it's very difficult to castrate a hippo, it seems that their testicles are well protected and, um... shift.
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Old 02-27-2020, 08:23 AM
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I suppose it's because the people who live there don't want to shoot them. If they decided to go the shooting route, if sterilization doesn't work, I'd recommend getting a Rich American Douchebag™ to pay top dollar for the opportunity.
That was my thought; if indeed they are an invasive animal, then they ought to monetize it and have people (not just American) pay good money to go down there and hunt them.
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Old 02-27-2020, 12:48 PM
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How much damage are they doing? They multiply slowly and I thought didn't do much harm to the local environment, so why kill them.
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Old 02-27-2020, 12:55 PM
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How much damage are they doing? They multiply slowly and I thought didn't do much harm to the local environment, so why kill them.
From the article:

Quote:
However, the animals are having an impact on the native flora and fauna, with indications their presence is displacing some local species.

A new study by researchers at the University of California, San Diego, found the hippos were changing the quality of the water. The hippos feed at night then spend the day cooling off in the water where they defecate, changing the chemistry in the lakes.
Also, according to Tom Lehrer the plural is not hippopotamuses but hipponpotami. (My spell check doesn't agree with Mr. Lehrer)
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Old 02-27-2020, 01:19 PM
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Why is there any debate? Sure, animal rights and all - but at what cost?
You're answering your own question. Not saying with certainty that it's an animal rights issue, but it wouldn't surprise me at all if that turned out to be the reason we're not sending inviting jerk dentists to dispatch them with high-powered rifles.

Here in Ann Arbor, we've got a deer population problem within the city itself. They get hit by cars and chew up people's landscaping, and so for several years now, the city council has hired a team of sharpshooters to cull a predetermined number of them each winter. The program has invited plenty of protest.
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Old 02-27-2020, 01:27 PM
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They shoot water horses, don't they?
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  #9  
Old 02-27-2020, 03:35 PM
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Hunting parties, huh? I clearly remember the last time this happened, people setting up hippo camps....
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  #10  
Old 02-27-2020, 04:38 PM
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From the article:



Also, according to Tom Lehrer the plural is not hippopotamuses but hipponpotami. (My spell check doesn't agree with Mr. Lehrer)
That's Allan Sherman, I think

"One hippopotami cannot get on a bus,
Because one hippopotami is two hippopotamus
And if you have two goose, that makes one geese
A pair of mouse is mice A pair of moose is meese"
  #11  
Old 02-27-2020, 04:39 PM
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Apparently drug kingpin Pablo Escobar liked hippos, and imported some to his home in Columbia. Since his arrest...
Interesting use of the word 'arrest.'
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Old 02-27-2020, 04:52 PM
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Heh...in the The Grand Tour's Columbia Special, one of the assignments given to May, Hammond and Clarkson was to get a photo of those hippos. An amusing outing for the mis-adventuring trio.

Last edited by blondebear; 02-27-2020 at 04:53 PM.
  #13  
Old 02-27-2020, 05:06 PM
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How much damage are they doing? They multiply slowly and I thought didn't do much harm to the local environment, so why kill them.
Also from the story linked to
Quote:
Later this year, Cornare will attempt multiple surgical sterilisations, as well as a chemical sterilisation technique that has been successful in pigs.

But they acknowledge that won't be enough to contain a hippopotamus population that is estimated to quadruple over the next 10 years and could eventually reach into the thousands. For now, it's as much as they can afford.
I won't quote directly but also in the link is that they are very dangerous to humans. Hippos are pretty aggressive and massive. They kill more people in Africa than any other animal.
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Old 02-27-2020, 05:42 PM
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It's really not a good idea to import megafauna from elsewhere. Here is what happened when someone had the bright idea to bring North American beavers to Tierra del Fuego in South America.

Yes, they have tried hunting them but it may be too late - there are too many.
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Old 02-27-2020, 06:58 PM
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... have people (not just American) pay good money to go down there and hunt them.
I don't think hippo are real high on the list of desirable big game animals.
  #16  
Old 02-27-2020, 07:40 PM
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Interesting use of the word 'arrest.'
Well, it was a cardiac arrest, occasioned by acute lead poisoning.
  #17  
Old 02-27-2020, 07:49 PM
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Easy solution: give them away for Christmas presents.

Last edited by Musicat; 02-27-2020 at 07:51 PM.
  #18  
Old 02-27-2020, 08:15 PM
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...if indeed they are an invasive animal, then they ought to monetize it...
I think a reality TV show where there's a race between gun totin' locals and feral hippos to catch the Rich American Douchebag™ in the Columbian jungle might rate it's socks off.
  #19  
Old 02-27-2020, 10:47 PM
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...his home in Columbia. ...
Quote:
Originally Posted by blondebear View Post
... Columbia Special, ...
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Originally Posted by penultima thule View Post
... in the Columbian jungle ...
<pedant>Mrs Iggy wants to says that It's Colombia, not Columbia!</pedant>

As a native Colombian she is aware of the hippos. Though many locals refer to them as mascotas (pets) del pueblo, apparently the beasts have attacked local fishermen and damaged crops. And with the population booming and no real predators the problems are just going to grow.
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Old 02-27-2020, 11:02 PM
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I'm glad we can stop ignoring the elephant in the room and start ignoring the hippo instead.
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Old 02-28-2020, 05:33 AM
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It would be expensive because you'd have to use bullets made of platinum.
  #22  
Old 02-28-2020, 10:41 PM
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Start a rumor that ground and dried hippo genitals are a human aphrodisiac. The males will vanish in mere weeks.
  #23  
Old 02-28-2020, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Cheesesteak View Post
I suppose it's because the people who live there don't want to shoot them. If they decided to go the shooting route, if sterilization doesn't work, I'd recommend getting a Rich American Douchebag™ to pay top dollar for the opportunity.



And TIL... it's very difficult to castrate a hippo, it seems that their testicles are well protected and, um... shift.
A few years ago, I saw a show about an alpha male hippo that some scientists decided to sedate and neuter. They took various blood and tissue samples from him while he was sedated, and the vet who castrated him displayed his testicles afterwards. They were as big as her hands!

He was killing other baby hippos, as the alpha male, and this was what they felt was the most humane action.
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Old 02-28-2020, 11:19 PM
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Start a rumor that ground and dried hippo genitals are a human aphrodisiac. The males will vanish in mere weeks.
But only if they're harvested from the Amazon.
  #25  
Old 02-29-2020, 09:34 AM
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But only if they're harvested from the Amazon.
Not to be overly pedantic; the river mentioned in the article is the Rio Magdalena, which is not part of the Amazon basin. But I agree with the premise - make them more valuable dead than alive and they will be gone shortly thereafter.

OTOH, how endangered are wild hippos in Africa? Could there be a need for a distinct, distant population in case of their demise in their homeland?
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Old 02-29-2020, 10:03 AM
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Not to be overly pedantic; the river mentioned in the article is the Rio Magdalena, which is not part of the Amazon basin. But I agree with the premise - make them more valuable dead than alive and they will be gone shortly thereafter.

OTOH, how endangered are wild hippos in Africa? Could there be a need for a distinct, distant population in case of their demise in their homeland?
Hippos are rated as vulnerable with a declining population. This is why I thought a new population might not be terrible. But if they are causing an impact locally, probably worse.
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Old 03-02-2020, 03:28 PM
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It's really not a good idea to import megafauna from elsewhere. Here is what happened when someone had the bright idea to bring North American beavers to Tierra del Fuego in South America.

Yes, they have tried hunting them but it may be too late - there are too many.
Or rabbits in Australia. They really do breed like rabbits. Australia to this day has a problem with them


http://www.petefalzone.com/handouts/...-australia.pdf
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Old 03-02-2020, 04:03 PM
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Hippopotamus to hippopotami is incorrect as it is false Latin - hippopotamus is Greek so I guess the plural should be hippoipotamus
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Old 03-02-2020, 04:05 PM
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Australia to this day has a problem with them.
Any current graph of the Australian rabbit population will show that due to the introduction of several exotic biological control mechanisms that any seasonal exponential growth in the population is now off a much lower base and fatal negative feedback vectors cut in much more quickly.

As an invasive and adopted species it remains a problem, but nothing like the extent of the first decades of last century.

Last edited by penultima thule; 03-02-2020 at 04:07 PM.
  #30  
Old 03-02-2020, 05:18 PM
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Hippopotamus to hippopotami is incorrect as it is false Latin - hippopotamus is Greek so I guess the plural should be hippoipotamus
In English, hippopotamuses or hippopotami so forget your Greek vs Latin. This is English.
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Old 03-02-2020, 06:25 PM
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Bullets have no effect- they have been shooting some with a revolver now for 65 years and those hippopotamuses are still going string, still wriggling their ears.
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Old 03-02-2020, 06:48 PM
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Quote:
Quoth nearwildheaven:

They took various blood and tissue samples from him while he was sedated, and the vet who castrated him displayed his testicles afterwards. They were as big as her hands!
That's... not very impressive, for an animal that size. I mean, have you ever seen an adult ram?
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Old 03-03-2020, 07:13 AM
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Wow - I misspell a country, and incorrectly refer to someone as having been arrested rather than shot.

If I do say so myself, an impressive number of errors for a very brief OP!
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  #34  
Old 03-03-2020, 09:52 AM
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In the early 20th Century, the United States government concocted a plan to import hippopotamuses into the marshlands of Louisiana to be bred and slaughtered as an alternative meat source.
That is from an Amazon description of River of Teeth. The plan was not implemented, the book is an alternate history where it was.
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Old 03-03-2020, 01:45 PM
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Have hippos been napalmed yet?
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Old 03-03-2020, 08:02 PM
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No, but they are very hungry hungry
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