Rare rhino shot for conservation education

November 14, 2007

In an ironic twist, a rare white rhinoceros was hunted in Africa for the sake of educating the U.S. public about endangered species.

Fred Morris, a prolific trophy hunter living in Utah, participated in a South African safari to kill a southern white rhino, whose hide is being mounted for display at Brigham Young University's Monte L. Bean Life Science Museum in Provo, Utah, the Salt Lake City Tribune reported Wednesday.

The exhibit also serves as a conservation fundraiser.

Last year, the museum recruited Morris, one of its benefactors, to hunt a white rhino at South Africa's Mkuze National Park in Natal province.

Museum officials expressed confidence that the regulated killing and export of Africa's rare animals don't threaten the species.

"They deemed they had some surplus rhinos or they never would have harmed any of them," Wesley Skidmore, the museum's vertebrates collection manager, told the Tribune.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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