Dangerously radioactive wild boar could roam Germany for another 50 years, as effects of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster are still felt 28 years after the toxic explosion.
Tests in Germany have revealed one-in-three wild boars contained such high levels of radiation that they are unfit for human consumption.
The state government of Saxony has revealed that even though the region lies 700 miles away from the Chernobyl disaster zone, wild boars in the area have been contaminated through eating contaminated mushrooms and truffles.
Four nuclear reactors exploded at the Chernobyl nuclear plant in Ukraine in 1986, releasing 100 times more radiation than the atom bombs dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima.
After the accident traces of radioactive deposits were found in almost every country in the northern hemisphere. But it was Ukraine and its neighbours who were worst affected, as wind direction and uneven rainfall left them at the nuclear plume's mercy.
Wild boar carcasses that exceed a limit of 600 becquerels per kg have to be destroyed. In a single year alone 297 out of 752 boars tested in Saxony have been over the limit, with some testing dozens of times over, reported the Telegraph.
The spread of radioactive boars has an economic impact as well as health implications. Hunters are paid compensation amounting to hundreds of thousands of euros by the government for carcasses they have to discard.
"It doesn't cover the loss from game sales, but at least it covers the cost of disposal," Steffen Richter, the head of the Saxon State Hunters Association, told Bild newspaper.