The demand for rhino horn has driven populations of the big ungulates toward extinction. Poachers feed a strong demand from Asia. From savetherhino.org:
Rhino horn is very desirable amongst the wealthy classes of Viet Nam, where it is considered a symbol of power and wealth, associated with business success and high social standing. This cultural importance is supported by an underlying belief in health benefits, in the form of traditional and non-traditional medicine. Some users believe that rhino horn can detoxify the body and therefore cure anything from a hangover to serious illnesses.
That’s why a rhino horn can sell for as much as $300,000 on the black market and retails for about $45,000 a pound. But a band of poachers trolling the Kruger National Park in South Africa found out that there are other critters out there, too.
As The Sun reports . . .
A poacher hunting rhinos in the Kruger National Park met a gruesome end after being trampled to death by an elephant and then eaten by a pride of hungry lions.
Four other poachers who fled the game reserve in South Africa in terror were picked up by police and explained how a member of their gang had been killed.
They described how an angry elephant surprised them as they stalked endangered rhino and stamped their friend to death giving them a chance to run for safety.
That’s a shame. When wardens went out looking for the former game thief, there wasn’t much to recover.
…Nick Fox said a head and a number of bloodied parts and limbs were recovered along with just a single empty shoe and their high powered hunting rifles and an axe.
He said: “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”.