It goes without saying that poaching and trophy hunting are absolutely deplorable and I have very little sympathy for anyone hurt taking part in this ‘sport’.
I say this because a rhino poacher is believed to have been attacked by an elephant and then eaten by a pride of lions during an incident in South Africa’s Kruger national park.
Four other men were involved in the incident, which saw a startled elephant stamp on one of the members of the group during a rhino hunt.
In a statement released by the South African Police Service, they confirmed they had found his dismembered head and clothing after the man’s remains had been eaten by lions in the Crocodile Bridge section of the park.
“A human skull found in the Kruger National Park (KNP) is believed to be that of a man reportedly killed by an elephant while poaching with his accomplices.
“The police received information that some men had gone poaching in the KNP on 01 April 2019, when suddenly an elephant attacked and killed one of them.”
Isaac Phaahla, the general manager of communications for the Kruger National Park added: “Indications found at the scene suggested that a pride of lions had devoured the remains leaving only a human skull and a pair of pants.”
The three other men taking part on the hunt of the endangered rhinos have since been arrested and are in police custody.
“Entering Kruger National Park illegally and on foot is not wise, it holds many dangers and this incident is evidence of that,” Glenn Phillips, managing executive of Kruger National Park, said in a statement. “It is very sad to see the daughters of the deceased mourning the loss of their father, and worse still, only being able to recover very little of his remains.”
The park’s owner confirmed that only a number of body parts, a single shoe, their rifles and an axe were recovered. They called a relative of the deceased man to tell them about the incident when they were found.
“We are of course saddened at any loss of life but these men came to kill our animals and this sends out a powerful message to poachers that you will not always be the winner.”
South Africa, which is home to almost 80% of the world’s rhinos, has been hard hit by poaching over the years, with more than 1,000 rhinos being killed by poachers there between 2013 and 2017. In that time, Kruger National Park has been a constant target for poachers.
Obviously it’s extremely sad for the deceased man’s family but if you live by the the sword, you die by the sword.
Hopefully this will serve as a lesson to people who are thinking of hunting these animals.
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