Elephant put down after attacking tourists in S.Africa

January 1, 2014
An elephant crosses the main road on June 22, 2010 at Kruger National Park

An elephant was put down in South Africa's Kruger National Park after it attacked and overturned a vehicle, ripping open a British woman's thigh with its tusk, the park said Tuesday.

The bull injured a couple, who had been filming it, after charging at their car in the mega-wildlife reserve on Monday.

"It suddenly stopped, turned around and rapidly walked towards the vehicle which was stationery at that time," the park said.

"The elephant charged at them, attacked the vehicle and flipped it over off the road into the thick bushes."

The couple was airlifted from the scene, stabilised, and then flown to a nearby hospital.

"The female tourist was seriously injured by one of the elephant's tasks which perforated and ripped open the back of her upper thigh," said the park.

The woman is a United Kingdom citizen. The man, who suffered minor injuries, is a South African living in the UK.

The bull was put down and was discovered to have been in musth, a condition that usually affects males once a year when , aggression and sexual activity increase.

The "abnormal behaviour" was also likely a result of an injury the elephant had suffered before the incident.

"Tourists are requested to always keep a safe distance at any animal sighting as they can be dangerous at times," said the park in a statement.

Explore further: Baby elephant euthanized at animal park

Related Stories

Zimbabwe elephant poisoning toll reaches 100

October 15, 2013

Zimbabwean wildlife authorities said Tuesday they had discovered another 10 elephant carcasses, bringing the number of the animals poisoned by cyanide for their ivory to over 100 in the past month.

Hong Kong returns rhino horns, elephant tusks to S.Africa

November 27, 2013

Hong Kong returned a consignment of seized rhino horns and elephant tusks worth $2.25 million (1.66 million euros) to South Africa on Wednesday, authorities said, as poaching for the Asian black market continues to escalate.

Recommended for you

Trade in invasive plants is blossoming

October 3, 2015

Every day, hundreds of different plant species—many of them listed as invasive—are traded online worldwide on auction platforms. This exacerbates the problem of uncontrollable biological invasions.

Ancestral background can be determined by fingerprints

September 28, 2015

A proof-of-concept study finds that it is possible to identify an individual's ancestral background based on his or her fingerprint characteristics – a discovery with significant applications for law enforcement and anthropological ...

Bat species found to have tongue pump to pull in nectar

September 28, 2015

(Phys.org)—A trio of researchers affiliated with the University of Ulm in Germany and the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama has found that one species of bat has a method of collecting nectar that has never ...


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.