Published: Sat, March 11, 2017
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Radioactive Boars Pose Risk in Towns Near Fukushima Nuclear Plant

Radioactive Boars Pose Risk in Towns Near Fukushima Nuclear Plant

Hundreds of radioactive wild boars moved into towns deserted after the nuclear crisis.

They worry that the toxic beasts could attack people returning to abandoned streets claimed by the animals, which are reportedly no longer afraid of humans.

"We need a strong hunting plan", Hidekiyo Tachiya, the mayor of neighboring town Soma was quoted as saying.

According to tests conducted by the Japanese government, some of the boars have shown levels of radioactive element cesium-137 that are 300 times higher than safety standards.

However, Japan has said that areas can be resettled if radiation drops to a level of 20 mSv per year - the same as a nuclear worker's maximum limit, the report said.

More than 150,000 people were forced to evacuate from their homes following the meltdown. "This is their new home now". By the government's own estimates, a full dismantling of the plant would take about 40 years more. In the abandoned coastal town of Namie-just 2.5 miles from the site of the meltdown-residents are expected to return at the end of the month, meaning that the boars must be cleared.

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However, hundreds of terrifying boars, which are known to attack humans, have taken over the area in the absence of human life, descending from surrounding hills and forests to hunt for food.

Authorities in the town of Tomioka say they have killed 800 boars so far, but claim that is not almost enough.

Reports state that teams of hunters have been dispatched to cull the boars from the towns of Namie and Tomioka.

Since April a year ago, over 300 boars have been killed.

Despite concerns over radiation that leaked from the nuclear power plant following the quake and tsunami, and amid questions about the plant's safety (it is being decommissioned), a government survey found that more than half of the 21,500 former residents of Namie plan to return, according to Reuters. One hunter says, "They found a place that's comfortable, there's plenty of food and no one will come after them".

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