Samantha Pearson of The Wall Street Journal reports that police in Soure, Brazil, saddle up and patrol on horned buffalo, which have an unusually robust presence on the island. Pearson writes:
Brazil’s military police already have a reputation as one of the toughest combat forces on the planet. But the battalion on Marajó Island at the mouth of the Amazon River has taken things to the next level. Here they patrol the streets on buffaloes.
The horned 1,800-pound beasts, which can pursue suspects across soggy mud flats and swim through thick mangrove swamps if necessary, are the only way to hunt down criminals across the vast island during the rainy season, police say.
Military Police riding buffalo on the island of Marajo in Brazil pic.twitter.com/Vs65LupcTo
— Federico Italiano (@FedeItaliano76) January 8, 2024
“There are places here you can’t reach by motorbike or even boat, but buffalo, now you can always get there by buffalo,” said Sgt. Ronaldo Souza, as he saddles up Minotaur, the most formidable of the battalion’s seven water buffalo, his silky black hide gleaming under the tropical sun. […]
Like other islanders, he has a deep affinity for the buffaloes in his own backyard but would happily eat someone else’s. In fact, his family has spent the past three generations stripping down buffaloes’ skins from the slaughterhouse next to his home to make leather sandals.
Read more here.