Reuters reports that as some of the towns near Fukushima re-open, those paving the way for returning residents often see boars strolling the streets.
Six years after the Fukushima Daichi nuclear disaster - a major nuclear meltdown brought on by an quake and tsunami hitting Fukushima, Japan - some residents who fled the area are getting the go-ahead to finally return home.
Wild boars are tough and scary animals-mean, omnivorous, highly adaptable, and prone to charge when enraged. And, since they've lost their wariness of people, they're likely to be aggressive."It is not really clear now which is the master of the town, people or wild boars", Tamotsu Baba, mayor of the deserted town of Namie, told Reuters.
The boars, which have radioactive levels 300 times higher than what's considered safe, have been known to attack humans on occasion.
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.
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Tomioka, another town impacted by the meltdown, has killed 800 boars, but local leaders believe the number is still too low, the Times reported.
With the six-year anniversary of the meltdown approaching on Saturday, residents are preparing to come home when an evacuation order is lifted at the end of March.
In nearby Tomioka, a team of 14 have been tasked with ridding the area with boars using their air rifles. One hunter says, "They found a place that's comfortable, there's plenty of food and no one will come after them".
In addition to the radioactive boars, the area also has packs of wild dogs and large colonies of rats which took over supermarkets when people abandoned the area in 2011. More than half of the 21,500 former residents have decided not to return, citing concerns over radiation and the safety of ongoing operations at the nuclear plant, which is now being decommissioned.