‘Castrating Big Eye Boy will spark turf war in Pui O’

A conservationist warned on Friday that a plan to castrate a Lantau buffalo dubbed Big Eye Boy could spark a turf war, with younger males battling each other to take his place as king of the area.

The Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department says it will try to catch and neuter Big Eye Boy, after he and another buffalo charged through Pui O on Thursday, knocking down at least two children and sending others fleeing for their lives.

The department says castrating Big Eye Boy will make him less aggressive towards the other male buffaloes and lower the chance of more people being injured.

But “Buffalo mother” Jean Leung told RTHK that the castration plan could spark pandemonium.

“If there’s no king, middle boys in another area will grow up, and they will come back to the area, fight back the area and be a king. Everyone wants to be a king,” she said.

Leung, who chairs the South Lantau Buffaloes Society, said when the king of Shui Hau was castrated, there was a surge in scuffles among the area’s buffaloes, and she fears such scenes could be repeated in Pui O if Big Eye Boy’s reign there comes to an end.

She added that construction of a sewage pumping station in Pui O is driving buffaloes who’ve lived there for two generations to seek new territory.

“I’m really angry. They point their fingers at the buffaloes. It’s the government‘s fault, not the buffaloes’ fault!”

Leung said the best way to avoid the buffaloes causing a nuisance is to protect the wetlands where they live so they don’t head into human residential areas instead.