Alleged rhino poachers mauled to death by lions in South Africa

09 July, 2018, 00:13 | Author: Darnell Taylor

The reserve's statement said it is clear the poachers had walked into a pride of six lions and that some of the poachers, if not all, were killed.

In February a poacher was killed by lions in the Umbabat Game Reserve near the Kruger National Park, and his family were forced to identify him using all that was left - his head.

Captain Mali Govender, a police spokesperson, shared that detectives are undergoing an investigation to determine if more people were eaten than they presume.

A ranger discovered human remains close to a pride of lions while taking guests on a safari drive at the reserve on Tuesday. This past Monday morning, around 4:30 AM, it is believed a group of three poachers entered the reserve with the intention of killing rhinos, but it appears the lions of the park interfered in time and attacked and ate the poachers!

They found a rifle with a silencer, an axe, wire cutters, three pairs of boots, and three pairs of gloves, along with various body parts.

Fox says the handler of an anti-poaching dog heard a "loud commotion" coming from the lions early on Monday. These things usually carry hunters of the rhinoceros that killed them and cut off their horns.

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Mr Fox said: "The lions may have eaten more of them it is hard to tell as the area is very thick with bush and you can not be sure what they have taken off to feed on elsewhere".

Since the incident, police have been patrolling the area on the chance that any of the poachers survived.

After alerting authorities, the reserve's vet tranquilised the lions so that police and anti-poaching units could retrieve the human remains and search for further clues.

Although we will continue to be extremely vigilant we remain positive that this incident will not necessitate any changes to the status quo of our lions.

Poaching is a major issue on the Eastern Cape with nine rhinos killed by illegal hunters on reserves this year.

"I think we had a stroke of luck here that the lions got to them before they got to the rhinos", Fox told AFP.

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