Pablo Escobar: Why scientists want to kill Colombia’s hippos

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Pablo Escobar is a name Colombia has been trying to forget for the last 30 years. One of the most notorious criminals of all time, he was the founder of the infamous Medellín drugs cartel in the 1980s, responsible for kidnappings, bombings and indiscriminate assassinations. At one point he was thought to be one of the world’s richest men. But the cocaine kingpin is also responsible for what scientists call an ecological time-bomb. A group of hippos originally imported by Escobar to his private zoo decades ago has multiplied and, according to scientists, is now spreading through one of the country’s main waterways – the River Magdalena. Last month, a study published in the Biological Conservation journal said culling the animals was the only way to mitigate their environmental impact.