“EIn August I took seven deer for reproduction, and three died afterwards, that is ten strays. In September I lost four, and there they attacked my peacocks”. Paul Payet, who runs a farm in Plaine-des-Cafres, can’t take it anymore. During the night from Sunday to Monday, stray dogs decimated his peacocks, seven out of the eight he had. “We’re almost at one attack a month, we’re all exhausted because I’m not the only one. I know another breeder like that, they attacked his rabbit farm just a few days ago.” he tells.
Stray dogs, abandoned or animals belonging to poachers, meanwhile the breeders of the heights organize themselves, make rounds at night, inspect the kilometers of fences and go together in search of escaped animals. “We started the night rounds again in order to euthanize the stray dogs, because they will definitely come back. On Monday we checked the fences to see if a poacher had made a hole and we went hunting for the deer that escaped in the night. They must be in the surrounding fields, but I don’t even know if they were bitten, because if it gets infected, I would still have losses.”he regrets.
Insults, threats and the feeling of having to do everything yourself
In addition to the financial losses and fatigue, Paul Payet protests against the inaction of the public authorities, who have obviously thrown in the towel due to animal migration. “Nobody’s interested anymore, it’s not shocking anymore and it’s unfortunate because I don’t want that, but it would have to be a child who gets bitten to see a reaction,” he said. “Only the gendarmes are on our side, frankly these guys deserve a medal. The town hall failed us, the municipal police don’t talk about it and neither does the Region, as the 25 hectare park right next door has been abandoned since June. People come up here to leave their dogs and then it comes to us.”repeats Paul Payet.
Because his speech hasn’t changed in years, he sounds the alarm in general indifference. So much so that he started receiving letters of threats, insults and intimidation for the actions he took to protect his farm. “To sum up, by killing Paul Payet, we save the lives of 50 dogs a year, many deer and other animals destined for slaughter (…) I hope that one day a dog will have time to to kill you. Jump over the neck”could, for example, read to him on social networks.
Recently, the breeder told us that he had received pseudo-letters with a legalistic and intimidating tone, promising him a future filled with lawsuits and financial losses. Insults, threats and the feeling of having to do everything yourself. Meanwhile, he saw his herd drop to 70 breeding animals, a loss of two-thirds of his deer herd in five years. At the height of its activity, it had 190 breeding animals for 120 births per year. “It is no longer viable for us because the gestation period for a fawn is very long, not to mention waiting for the deer to reach sexual maturity”laments the breeder whose natural balance of births is now in deficit.