Poachers kill 13 rare rhinos in India

Mar 01, 2013
A rhinoceros is seen at Kaziranga National Park, some 250 km east of Guwahati, the capital city the northeastern state of Assam, on September 27, 2012. Poachers at the park have slaughtered 13 endangered one-horned rhinos in the last two months, officials said on Friday as another death added to worries about a recent surge in killings.

Poachers in northeast India have slaughtered 13 endangered one-horned rhinos in the last two months, officials said on Friday as another death added to worries about a recent surge in killings.

The attacks have taken place around the Kaziranga National Park in Assam state, home to more than two-thirds of the world's one-horned rhinos where heavily-armed poachers shoot dead the giant .

On Thursday, forest rangers deployed to protect the species were engaged in a gun battle for more than seven hours but failed to prevent the killing of another animal.

"The killed the rhino and took away its horn. In two months they have killed 13 rhinos," Kaziranga park warden N.K. Vasu told AFP.

say the price of a single rhino horn rivals gold and its value attracts international organised crime groups.

China is the main market where it is used for medicine and jewellery while in Vietnam many believe that rhino horn can cure cancer and has aphrodisiac qualities.

"We cannot simply sit tight and watch the rhinos being slaughtered almost every other day," said Apurba Das, a wildlife conservationist in Assam.

At least 21 rhinos were killed last year.

Graphic fact file on threats to rhinos, elephants and sharks.

A 2012 census in the park put the number of the at 2,290 out of a global one-horned rhinoceros population of 3,300.

The species fell to near extinction in the early 1990s and is currently listed as "vulnerable" by the International Union for .

Authorities say they have intensified security patrols and are planning to seek help from locals residing in the periphery of the national to improve surveillance.

"It will be just a matter of time before the rhino population in Kaziranga is wiped out by organised poacher gangs with the government failing to check incidents of poaching," said Ramen Deka, a lawmaker from Assam.

Explore further: Declining catch rates in Caribbean green turtle fishery may be result of overfishing

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Two rare Indian rhinos die after poaching attack

Sep 30, 2012

Two rare rhinos brutally attacked by poachers this week in northeast India have died, veterinarians said on Saturday, triggering protests at local authorities' failure to protect the animals.

India floods kill threatened rhinos

Jul 09, 2012

Devastating floods in northeast India have killed around 600 animals in the region's largest wildlife park, including more than a dozen threatened one-horned rhinos, officials said Monday.

Recommended for you

Japan lawmakers demand continued whaling

7 hours ago

Japanese lawmakers on Wednesday demanded the government redesign its "research" whaling programme to circumvent an international court ruling that described the programme as a commercial hunt dressed up as ...

EU must take urgent action on invasive species

10 hours ago

The EU must take urgent action to halt the spread of invasive species that are threatening native plants and animals across Europe, according to a scientist from Queen's University Belfast.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Chimpanzees prefer firm, stable beds

Chimpanzees may select a certain type of wood, Ugandan Ironwood, over other options for its firm, stable, and resilient properties to make their bed, according to a study published April 16, 2014 in the open-access ...

Revealing camouflaged bacteria

A research team at the Biozentrum of the University of Basel has discovered an protein family that plays a central role in the fight against the bacterial pathogen Salmonella within the cells. The so cal ...

Down's chromosome cause genome-wide disruption

The extra copy of Chromosome 21 that causes Down's syndrome throws a spanner into the workings of all the other chromosomes as well, said a study published Wednesday that surprised its authors.