Lions Leave Behind Only Bloody Bits of Rhino Poachers

Published by Zachary Toliver.

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.

“[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 trophy hunting as well as the morbid obsession that some people have with dead animals’ body parts, animals and humans will continue to die.

Just like other animals whose fetishized body parts are used as “trophies,” rhinos are slaughtered before their bodies are mutilated. Whether they’re in the wild or in captivity, these animals live in mortal danger of being killed by callous humans who can sell one of their horns for tens of thousands of dollars on the black market.

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.

What You Can Do

You can help stop the practice of killing animals for “trophies.” Take action now by contacting UPS and urging it to stop transporting hunting trophies—and then share this page with your family and friends:

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind