Unusual Aardvarks Discovery in Residential Secunda – Ridge Times

Not just one, but two aardvarks have recently been found wandering the residential areas of Secunda.

One was found in a house on Krokodilrivier Street near Laerskool Kruinpark and the other in a house on Harding Street.

Answering the call in the early hours of February 27, Wesley Brits of GTR said it was amazing to see such a creature.

“I never thought you’d find a wild animal like this in town, especially here in Secunda,” Brits said.

He said it was the most amazing experience for him to see such wildlife up close and it was the first time in his life that he had encountered an aardvark.

Well-known snake handler and local police officer, W/O Oosie Oosthuizen, with the help of Hein Alberts and the CPF answered the call from the British.

She couldn’t believe what she was seeing. It was also the first time she had met an aardvark.

“It was one of two discoveries in two days. It is not clear where they came from, but we have since released them in the Sasol play camp,” said W/O Oosthuizen.

She said it’s not common to find such creatures here.

“It was a first for me and the first time that I know of such discoveries, especially in the city.

“I was so shocked by what I saw. I couldn’t believe it. It was one of the most interesting captions I’ve had in years,” said W/O Oosthuizen.

Although the aardvark looks like an anteater, W/O Oosthuizen said there is a difference.

This aardvark was found in a house on Krokodilrivier Street near Laerskool Kruinpark. The animal was captured and released at the Sasol hunting camp. (Photo: provided)

An anteater has smaller ears and a longer snout, while an aardvark has longer ears (like rabbits) and a shorter snout and shorter hair.

“I also learned a lot now about this species. I didn’t even know we had such species here,” said W/O Oosthuizen.

She said the captured aardvarks were the size of a small pig.

After successfully capturing the two aardvarks, W/O Oosthuizen and Alberts handed them over to conservationist Daan Loock of Sasol.

Loock provided the cages and nets needed to capture the two animals.

If you encounter such creatures, W/O Oosthuizen said residents should keep a watchful eye but stay away so as not to scare or disturb them.

Try to close all doors or entrances to ensure that they are safe from encounters with pets.

“The aardvark also digs holes. They can dig a hole as deep as 1.2m in 30 seconds to a minute.

“Please don’t hurt them. Please call us if you encounter one. Don’t try to capture them on your own,” said W/O Oosthuizen.

The aardvark was spotted in a house on Krokodilrivier Street near Laerskool Kruinpark. (Photo: provided)

Addressing the Crete Times, Loock said Sasol had aardvarks at his hunting camp, however, the aardvarks are wild animals and could have come from nearby farms or properties.

“Although they are very elusive, that does not mean that they are not there.

“So yeah, we don’t see them but there are aardvarks in the area, especially where there’s quite a bit of sandy soil which is ideal habitat for them,” Loock said.

He said Secunda was designed to have green stripes all around and these are ideal transition areas for wildlife to move through the city.

It is the only link between the northern part of the city and the southern part and it is an ideal migration route.

This aardvark was found in a house in Harding Street Secunda. The aardvark was captured and released in the Sasol hunting camp. (Photo: provided)

“We’ve seen the same thing with our servals and some of our other animals that use these transition zones to migrate from one area to another,” Loock explained.

He said that although the aardvark is not known to be dangerous, it can still scratch or even injure a human.

There are laws that protect these wild animals and prohibit their capture.

“By law, you are not allowed to capture such wildlife without the proper permits.

“In this case, we are collaborating with the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency (MPTA). Any normal person is not allowed to capture them without a permit,” Loock concluded.

If you encounter such wildlife in residential areas, contact W/O Oosie Oosthuizen on 076 051 0710 or Hein Alberts on 082 291 5344 or contact the local Highveld Ridge SPCA on 082 222 1122 or 067 114 7206.