2018 first rhino victim of poachers
Poachers shot dead a pregnant rhino and hacked off her horn in a nature reserve outside Komani (Queenstown, South Africa) this week. Lawrence de Lange Nature Reserve manager Hein Gerber said yesterday the five year-old white rhino had been due to calve in two to three weeks.
“One rhino is bad enough. We were very shocked and it is a great loss. But with her being pregnant, in fact we have lost two animals,” de Gerber said.
Initial investigations showed the poachers used a .375 calibre hunting rifle to shoot the animal before chopping off its horn with an axe either late on Christmas night or before dawn the next day, he said.
The carcass was found 60 to 70m from the reserve’s southern fence.The access point through the fence had not yet been pinpointed but it was clear that the poachers had got into the reserve and had not shot the animal from the road, the manage said.