WATCH: Radioactive Wild Boars Roaming Fukushima Threatening Residents’ Return – Free Thought Project
Fukushima Prefecture — As if mentally preparing to move back to areas deserted six years ago weren’t daunting enough, residents returning to four towns inside the 12-mile exclusion zone face the prospect of being attacked by radioactive wild boars.
In the time since a massive earthquake triggered a colossal tsunami that smashed into the Japanese coast on March 11, 2011 — crippling the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and triggering meltdowns in three reactors — wild boars have scavenged the evacuated exclusion zone, plundered abandoned crops, feasted on dead livestock left to rot in pens, and have even occasionally attacked humans.
And while wild boars do roam in northern Japan — where the meat is considered a delicacy — the animals who took over when people abruptly left have absorbed so much radioactivity, they present a new danger.
“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,” the New York Times reports.
With the Japanese government preparing to allow residents of four towns to return for the first time since 2011, local hunters have begun clearing the aggressive animals to make the area safe.
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