"Wild boars in this town are not scared of people these days", boar hunter Shoichiro Sakamoto said.
Vicious radioactive wild boars pose a new danger to Japanese residents returning to evacuated zones following the 2011 natural disaster and tsunami. After the 2011 meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant, exclusion zones were set up around the plant and the populations of the towns within were evacuated to a safer distance, giving rise to Fukushima "ghost towns".
Tamotsu Baba, mayor of the seaside town of Namie, told Reuters: "It is not really clear now which is the master of the town, people or wild boars".
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.
The highly radioactive boars have been reported to attack people when provoked and have become a major problem in the Japanese government's efforts to prepare the towns for the eventual homecoming of its former, human residents.
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The government is telling residents who do not return to homes that they risk losing housing benefits - which multiple reports are citing as a violation of human rights.
The town of Namie, located 4km (2.5 miles) from the Fukushima power plant, is scheduled to see residents return 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. The Washington Post reported a year ago on the animals, noting that scientists have found no evidence that the boars have any ill effects from radioactivity in their systems.
Despite concerns over radiation that leaked from the nuclear power plant following the quake and tsunami, and amid questions about the plant's safety (it is being decommissioned), a government survey found that more than half of the 21,500 former residents of Namie plan to return, according to Reuters.
Once captured, the boars are killed.