A few scattered, bloodied body parts, including a severed head, and some guns: That was pretty much all that was left of three poachers who were reportedly mauled to death by a pride of lions after sneaking onto a nature reserve to kill rhinos for their horns.
Rest In Pieces https://t.co/0PqVt9mrBY
— Ricky Gervais (@rickygervais) July 5, 2018
“[T]he lions are our watchers and guardians and [the poachers] picked the wrong pride and became a meal,” Sibuya Game Reserve owner Nick Fox told Daily Express.
Fox told reporters that along with the bloody remains and empty shoes, staffers at the South African nature reserve found high-powered hunting rifles, axes (used to chop off rhinos’ horns), and enough food to last for several days. He also noted that there could be more half-eaten poachers unearthed in the thick 30-square-mile bushland.
This year alone, nine rhinos from surrounding reserves have been shot and killed with high- powered rifles. It’s suspected that this was the gang responsible for those killings.
Until the world rejects the morbid obsession that some humans have with dead animals’ body parts and realizes that living beings are not “trophies,” humans and other animals will both pay the price.
Just like other animals whose body parts are fetishized, rhinos are slaughtered and their bodies are mutilated. Whether they’re in the wild or in captivity, these individuals live in mortal danger of being killed by callous humans who can sell a single one of their horns for tens of thousands of dollars on the black market.
— PETA Asia (@PETAAsia) March 3, 2018
Hunters kill millions of animals every year and have contributed to the extinction of species all around the world, including the Tasmanian tiger, the Zanzibar leopard, and the dodo. Rhinos are on course to suffer a similar fate. Western black rhinos and their northern white counterparts have become extinct in the wild, and a subspecies of the Javan rhino was declared extinct in the animals’ native Vietnam in 2011.
Many humans have been killed by the same animals they intended to slaughter and claim as bloodlust trophies. As unfortunate as any death may be, no one can blame animals for protecting themselves and their homes or acting on natural instinct.