S.Africa's rhino poaching toll passes 600 for the year

Sep 05, 2013
This picture taken on July 25, 2013 shows a white rhino at the Johannesburg Zoo. Poachers have killed more than 600 rhinos in South Africa so far this year, figures showed Thursday, with losses close to the total number of animals slaughtered in 2012.

Poachers have killed more than 600 rhinos in South Africa so far this year, figures showed Thursday, with losses close to the total number of animals slaughtered in 2012.

South Africa is home to the world's biggest rhino population but killings have surged in recent years to reach 668 animals last year from just 13 reported incidents in 2007.

"The total number of rhino poached since the beginning of the year has increased to 618," said the department of environmental affairs.

More than half were killed in the giant Kruger National Park which borders Mozambique in the east.

The bloodbath is fuelled by black market demand in Asia where consumers falsely believe the horns, the same composition as fingernails, have powerful healing properties.

A total of 191 suspected have been arrested this year, with 24 in the past two weeks.

Explore further: Zimbabwe to export elephants in population curb

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

S. Africa rhino toll hits 428 this year

Jun 20, 2013

Poachers have slaughtered at least 428 rhinos in South Africa so far this year, more than two a day, official figures showed Thursday, despite high-profile efforts to curb poaching.

Recommended for you

Wildlife groups seek help for California owl

Dec 24, 2014

Loggers cutting down forests burned in wildfires could bring about the extinction of California spotted owls, wildlife advocates said Tuesday as they sought protection for the birds under the federal Endangered ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.