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Mon Jan 26 20:29:57 SAST 2015

Eleven rhino poached in KZN

Sapa | 21 May, 2013 14:17
A dead rhino and calf killed by poachers. File photo.
Image by: AFP PHOTO/STRINGER

Eleven rhino have been poached in KwaZulu-Natal in the past 20 days, Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife said on Tuesday.

The carcasses of eight rhino, seven white and one black, were found in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park. Six were recently shot on the park's western shores, and the other two along the eastern shores.

Two white rhino were found dead in the uMsuluzi Community Conservation Area, near Colenso. The other rhino, which was reported a week ago, was killed in the Weenen Nature Reserve.

Ezemvelo CEO Bandile Mkhize said this was "depressing". However, he would keep working to tighten security.

"We will not drop our heads. However heartsore I feel today, we will fight with everything we've got to track down these criminals.

"No one can point fingers, but it would appear that these attacks came at a time when we were a little vulnerable, especially in the western shores area that has a 100km long boundary."

Ezemvelo was preparing for a rhino summit which would take place at the University of Zululand, Kwa Dlangezwa, from May 22 to 23.

Matters up for discussion included how to involve communities as the first line of defence, the national strategy on rhino poaching, and how to improve local networks' combating of wildlife crime.

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