News24

Aquila rhino dies after poaching attack

2011-08-25 10:28

Cape Town - A rhino which was dehorned by poachers at Aquila Private Game Reserve in Worcester last weekend has died.

The rhino, known as ABSA, had been fighting for his life after he was darted and his horn was removed with a chainsaw.

"This is one of the hardest things I have ever had to do .... I have just had confirmation from the vets in the field.... ABSA did not make it through the night.... he passed away early this morning... Rest in peace now my friend," read a post on the reserve's Facebook page on Thursday morning.

Another male rhino was killed in the attack on the private game reserve early on Saturday, and a female was darted twice, but was not dehorned. It is believed an anti-poaching patrol had scared off the poachers.

Blood loss

Aquila Private Game Reserve spokesperson Mandi Jarman said in a media release earlier this week that two groups of rhino poachers attacked three rhinos on the reserve. Anti-poaching teams had deterred two previous poaching attempts.

The reserve believes that the poachers were disturbed as only half of ABSA's second horn was sawn off before they retreated. The rhino lost a lot of blood and was found lying in a position which could have caused massive muscle and organ damage, she said.

ABSA was the first rhino reintroduced to Aquila and to the Western Cape in over 250 years after being shot out by hunters. ABSA fathered the first two rhino calves born in the Western Cape in this time. The surviving rhino was one of the two fathered by him.

Aquila is offering a R100 000 reward for information leading to an arrest and prosecution of these poachers.

- Aquilarhino on Twitter

Comments
  • Greenrain - 2011-08-25 10:38

    This is truly sad, I really wish there was something that I as an ordinary civilian could do to help against this poaching problem. These are such amazing animals. It must take a completely heartless person to do something like this.

      Lisa - 2011-08-25 10:49

      Aquila has set up a fund raising account to purchase better antipoaching equipment. The details are on their site. If you want you can dontate to this fund.

      Greenrain - 2011-08-25 10:51

      Thanks Lisa, but I was wanting to get involved more than by just donating money.

      JohannV - 2011-08-25 10:57

      I think our ambassadors to China and Malaysia should advertise in those countries' media that rhino horn does not give an erection, those bastards can just as well chew their nails. Get the message out there that the stuff doesn't work and maybe the trade will stop?

      jontheb - 2011-08-25 11:24

      As sad as this is, I'm glad Absa passed away. He wouldn't have been the great rhino he was without his horn. It's like cutting off a man's manhood. At a recent visit to Aquila, Absa had an erection in the veldt and a little boy in the truck asked what was wrong with that rhino. I told him that Absa was a "special rhino". He was special in many ways. R.I.P big boy!!!

      p123 - 2011-08-25 11:31

      I wish someone would cut these poachers you know what off and let them bleed to death!!! Bastards

      p123 - 2011-08-25 11:34

      These stupid Asians who can't get it up really need to wake up!!!

      browniegirl - 2011-08-25 14:18

      I think Searl Derman would be only too happy for you to contact him Greenrain. @searlderman on twitter or via his facebook page http://www.facebook.com/Aquilasafari?sk=wall

      THX1148 - 2011-08-25 14:22

      @JohannV You've got about as much chance of that working as you have of convincing our locals that raping a virgin will cure AIDS.

  • underdog - 2011-08-25 10:39

    To quote a line from Limitless to describe what I would like to do to these poachers: "You know what we'll do? I'd cut you at waist, peel your skin up over your head and tie a knot in it. You don't die from this. You suffocate."

  • geefats - 2011-08-25 10:40

    It's heartbreaking. Pouchers should get the death penalty!

  • Karen - 2011-08-25 10:42

    this is so cruel - i can't understand how people are able to do this - i accidentally tramped on my dogs paw one day and spent most of the day hugging the dog, crying and apologising to it because the yelp broke my heart!!! these people are not human or normal.

  • Joe - 2011-08-25 10:45

    I hope the persons that did this burn in Hell!!!

  • VELOCITY - 2011-08-25 10:46

    I'm hoping that maybe, just maybe the Mayan Calender is correct and the world ends in Dec 2012 and all this misery and death will stop. The past two weeks have been horrible; aircraft crashes, bus accidents, massive fires, animals maimed and killed, taxi accidents, stupid political crap, strikes, riots, wars. I can't be positive anymore, the whole lot is so depressing. Where's the fun gone?

      Darter - 2011-08-25 11:05

      Uhm...wow, you've just described what's been going on around the world since the 1950's. I'm sorry but please dont involve others in your depression. Ask the Mayans to take you, and you alone....

      GypseyAnn - 2011-08-25 11:43

      The world will not be ending. However the world as we know it and the way we live in it will most certainly change and that is something to look forward to - let's just bring in the light to drown out the darkness.

  • Nazgul - 2011-08-25 10:49

    I did not want to look at the pics, since the story broke. Unfortunately, I did, and I've got tears in my eyes now.

      pugwash - 2011-08-25 13:46

      impossible not to cry . . .

  • Warren - 2011-08-25 10:50

    line these bastards up infront of a Firing Squad I'd say

      Flee - 2011-08-25 12:34

      No Warren, Too quick and painless, I say cut off their dicks with a blunt plastic knife (no anesthetic) and let them bleed to death too Sick to the core F*ckers.....

  • Currie_Mafia - 2011-08-25 10:51

    Absolutely barbaric... It seems like the heartless bastards are more organised than the anti-poaching teams. Police snipers should be employed.

      Walter - 2011-08-25 10:58

      Like everything else, the authorities remain mute and unconcerned. They should be ridiculed to such an extent that they will have to take positive action. Rhino poaching in Namibia is almost unheard of because the Gvt has declared all rhinos to be the property of the State and any person caught poaching faces huge prison sentences.

      Darter - 2011-08-25 11:08

      WALTER....incorrect to say authorities remain unconcerned. When last has a Rhino been poached in Kruger for example? If the SA Gvt was to say all rhinos are the property of the state, how many people would be against that idea? Is that not a form of "nationalization"? Would the private game owners be compensated? etc etc etc

      Ulindi - 2011-08-25 14:10

      The anti-poaching units in small private game reserves are no match for this rhino poaching syndicate... The Gov is involved, but only at the big national parks where the military are deployed to safeguard the game...perhaps more involvement from their side to all game parks with game of this sort should be under military protection

  • pants - 2011-08-25 10:51

    Enough is enough..... we need to get drastic. We need to start fighting fire with fire. If the penalty for being found guilty of having anything to do with the trade in rhino horn, elephant tusks is severe enough it will end. please before its to late.

  • michael.ferraris - 2011-08-25 11:00

    :(

  • settlers - 2011-08-25 11:00

    Whoever they are, I hope those poachers rot in hell.

  • Dad - 2011-08-25 11:06

    Unfortunately, killing the poachers will do little to stop this. They are poor folk that stand to earn a lot of money when they pull off a killing/poaching. If/when they get shot, there are another 1 mil people willing to take the odds for the reward. Problem is that a dead rhino is a lot more valuable than a live rhino, as there is more money behind the horn trade, than behind protection/conservation. The only way to fix this is by legalising the trade in rhino horn. That would make a live rhino more valuable than a dead rhino as rhino can be de-horned without killing them, and can grow more than one horn in a lifetime. Result: the species will survive and owners will be able to spend the same amount of money to protect their assets as poachers do to steal that. So the real culprits are the Environmental Affairs ministry, for failing to realise this.

  • Voorvel - 2011-08-25 11:07

    We will get them.....and then de-horn them. Bastads.

      diana2 - 2011-08-25 11:12

      please call me if you get them, I will really love to de-horn them, that might just be fun nhe

  • Coquine - 2011-08-25 11:10

    It's bad enough that people in foreign countries are paying huge amounts of money to kill our wildlife for their absurd beliefs, but locals who help them deserve only the harshest punishment. Btw, it's a petty point but I doubt very much that this rhino's name was ABSA, more like Absa.

  • kold1 - 2011-08-25 11:14

    Rhino poaching is a sad fact of life . THe powers that be should put cyanide into the horns , let the buggers who use this die , the market for the horn will soon dry out for fear of death. As for the poachers they should be severly tortured , and staked in the parks where they commit these shameful acts . I will offer my services to do the tortures , if no one will want ot do it!!!!

  • punisherza - 2011-08-25 11:18

    I can't believe this... @#$%^&* Poachers, how would you like it if i darted you the cut of your P#$%^ off with a hacksaw!!!

  • King Shaka@24.com - 2011-08-25 11:18

    Who names an animal after a bank?

      Coquine - 2011-08-25 11:48

      Some sponsorship reason possibly? Or tribute to the bank who funded the business?

      jontheb - 2011-08-25 11:55

      he was named Absa because he was bought with a loan that they financed

      Ulindi - 2011-08-25 14:16

      is this what stands out to you after reading this article? catch a wakeup

  • Alan guy - 2011-08-25 11:19

    cant the government sell off just 1 griffin plane (that no one knows how to fly anyway) and use that money to fund a serious anti poaching unit.

      JohannV - 2011-08-25 12:13

      It's called a Gripen, but I agree with you.

      GypseyAnn - 2011-08-25 13:31

      Call me a cynic, but perhaps the government is involved - when you look at the money involved I am sorry to say nothing would surprise me!

      Alan guy - 2011-08-25 15:13

      sorry JohannV thanks for the correction

  • trevor06 - 2011-08-25 11:20

    F**k these guys! When they get caught, they must use a chainsaw, and cut of their first horn, i.e there nose, and their second horn, i.e there d*ck!!!

  • Mr Gus - 2011-08-25 11:20

    Cry the beloved country....... A nother F erking R eally I nsane C atastrophe A rgh!

  • Sense - 2011-08-25 11:21

    There is a special place reserved in hell for the people responsible for this.

  • LP - 2011-08-25 11:24

    RIP my ancient friend, I will be one of those to avenge yours and the death of your brothers and sisters.

  • Koos van Wyk - 2011-08-25 11:25

    We need minimum sentences of long term imprisonment for all types of poachers. They pay the current fines out of their back-pockets. Sad that the government seems unwilling to take the matter seriously.

  • Heinrich - 2011-08-25 11:26

    People responsible for this should be shot in the leg and left to bleed to death.

      Flee - 2011-08-25 16:22

      I know that as a man you would not necessarily want to think of this... but I can def think of another place to shoot them, and let them bleed out...

  • Morty - 2011-08-25 11:28

    When will some cultures get an extreme makeover ? Leave the dolphins, sharks, elephants, rhinos, seals, whales etc ... and dogs, alone ! It won't improve your health, sex life or status, despite what your culture says. If you seriously believe it will, then you need to rethink your beliefs and life values.

      KanaMay - 2011-08-27 13:24

      There is nothing wrong with taking the naturally dead elephants' ivory. In fact, flood the market with legitimately-harvested ivory & rhino horns to decrease their price drastically, then those stupid poachers will find a more lucrative crime.

  • Lyn - 2011-08-25 11:30

    This is most distressing. Absa, I am sorry that we as the human race have let you and your fellow Rhino's down - I hope some day you will have the grace to forgive us RIP - no more suffering x

  • Tracey - 2011-08-25 11:31

    These poaching syndicates have family & friends aware of the atrocities they are committing. That makes them just as culpable & should these people be caught, those who protected their illegal activities should also be dealt with. Have some ethics & prove your humanity - tip off the authorities & stop robbing South Africans of their heritage for fictitious beliefs on another continent.

  • Heinrich - 2011-08-25 11:31

    The people responsible for this should be shot in the legs and bleed to death.

  • GypseyAnn - 2011-08-25 11:40

    This is just absolutely tragic. Even more reason for the ante to be upped on catching these murderers! I have been praying so hard for you to survive and following your progress on Facebook. RIP ABSA :( and sincere condolences to everyone who worked so hard to save your life. Love & Angel Blessings

  • hannelize.lombard - 2011-08-25 11:40

    The poachers should be shot and their carcasses left for the jackals and other animals to feast off!

  • Roger Rothner - 2011-08-25 11:42

    The f**king bastards

  • Turdy - 2011-08-25 11:47

    It's because human life has become so cheap that things like this happen. If these people that kill the rhinos weren't treated like an animals,sex slave or pieces of garbage from youth, they would feel empathy for other living things.The root of the problem is poverty and ignorance.Hate breeds hate.Something we have to make peace with ,because it will not change until we ourselves become extinct or finally realize that the world doesn't revolve around the individual, but rather the species as a whole. Think the former is more plausible. Politicians don't solve problems.The world is run by idiots for idiots and we reap the rotten fruits of corporate corruption.peace out

  • chat-chat - 2011-08-25 11:56

    The Asians have no regard for our wildlife - they don't have rhinos, so why should they care if they are extinct? To them it is all about money. It is not only Asians who buy or use rhino-horn or ivory, though. The people doing the poaching in our country are South Africans, black & white. We have to protect our wildlife for our future generations, its their heritage. The only way to do that is to make a law that poaching has a minimum gaol sentence of 20yrs, catch the buggers and enforce the penalty. No more messing about - when they are gone, it's too late. The cruelty of the poachers is abominable, but the destruction of our national heritage and pride in our magnificent wild animals borders on treason.

  • Bushboy - 2011-08-25 12:03

    Funds are needed to fight poachers. Prince Wills wedding cost a few hundred mill, but it only set the brit public back less than a pound each. Imagine the difference we as South Africans could make if we all gave 2 bucks to anti poaching. 2 bucks to save a species.....

  • marie-louise - 2011-08-25 12:42

    It is really appalling that we cannot protect our wildlife. Drastic actions are called for. Like very stiff sentences for those involved in poaching. The syndicate that was cought, involving game farmers, vets were given fine/bail for ridiculous amounts that were laughable in comparison to what they are paid for the horns. And then maybe we need to go the route of legalising the trade of rhino horns. Let's face it, our existinbg method of combatting poaching is not working!

  • Lindy - 2011-08-25 12:53

    :( so very-very sad.... RIP ABSA. x

  • Valentino - 2011-08-25 12:57

    They should rip off their own fingernails and toenails and sell it on the black market.... After all it is keratin.

  • To The Point - 2011-08-25 13:04

    THIS HAS GONE FAR ENOUGH - BRING BACK THE DEATH SENTANCE OR SENTENCE THE USELESS GOVERMENT OFFICIALS WHO ARE BEING PAID TO PROTECT THEM - FIRE MARTINUS VAN SCHALKWYK AND THAT USELESS ENVIRONMENT MINISTER EDNA MOLEWA, THEY ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DEATHS OF ALL THE RHINO. I HOPE THE REST OF THE WORLD WILL START BOYCOTTING TOURISM TO SA UNTIL THE GOVERNMENT FIRE BOTH THESE USELESS CHARACTERS AND STOP SENSELESS SLAUGHTER. KILL THE POACHERS ON SIGHT. LIFE FOR A LIFE - THIS IS REALLY GETTING OUT OF HAND AND ANC MUST EXPLAIN WHY THEY ARE YOU STOCKPILING RHINO HORN AND NOT DESTROYING IT? SHAME ON THE ANC.

  • To The Point - 2011-08-25 13:07

    THIS HAS GONE FAR ENOUGH - BRING BACK THE DEATH SENTANCE OR SENTENCE THE USELESS GOVERMENT OFFICIALS WHO ARE BEING PAID TO PROTECT THEM - FIRE MARTINUS VAN SCHALKWYK AND THAT USELESS ENVIRONMENT MINISTER EDNA MOLEWA, THEY ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DEATHS OF ALL THE RHINO. I HOPE THE REST OF THE WORLD WILL START BOYCOTTING TOURISM TO SA UNTIL THE GOVERNMENT FIRE BOTH THESE USELESS CHARACTERS AND STOP SENSELESS SLAUGHTER. KILL THE POACHERS ON SIGHT. LIFE FOR A LIFE - THIS IS REALLY GETTING OUT OF HAND AND ANC MUST EXPLAIN WHY THEY ARE YOU STOCKPILING RHINO HORN AND NOT DESTROYING IT? SHAME ON THE ANC.

  • jean - 2011-08-25 13:09

    My heart is truely sore to think such a great guy like ABSA should have gone through all that pain. Rest in peace ABSA. To the owners and people who work at Aquila sorry guys my heart really bleeds for you.

  • MicaGee - 2011-08-25 13:11

    The solution is simple: poachers are a small percentage of the problem. The problem lies where the demand is created. So poison the horn with cyanide or ricin, advertise the poisoning internationally and see who takes the chance with consuming it. Eliminate the demand and expose those creating the demand ... simple.

  • Tamz.S - 2011-08-25 13:16

    While i have no intention of diminishing the horror and agonies the Rhino have suffered for illogical fantasy medication and human vanity, where is all the anger, disgust and attention for the thousands of animals we torture, mutilate and kill daily for a burger, breakfast or braai, belt or bag? anyone who is appalled at what happens to the Rhinos yet still eats meat/wears leather etc is an absolute hypocrite in the worst form! If anything the Rhinos suffer FAR less than animals in factory farms. Time people caught a wake up! Makes me SO cross. How is it ok to eat an animal just because humans have breed such vast numbers of them, yet be upset when an endangered animal dies?!?

      Flee - 2011-08-25 16:27

      And you Tamz take it upon yourself to assume that all who comment here are savage carnivores with blood dripping down their chins.. You do know what they say about assumption??. Please get over yourself, stop preaching and making us true veggies look like a bunch of raving lunatics... Freak show..

      Balance - 2011-08-25 17:25

      Flee, Tamz didn't say everyone commenting here is a hypocrite. She said if ANYONE is appalled about the rhino they should feel the same horror for the other animals.

      Tamz.S - 2011-08-26 09:04

      Flee - I am vegan. I am just saying that how can people be so appalled at what happened to the Rhino, yet they pay for animals to be butchered everyday in factory farms. I am against the harming of any animals for any reason at all. I think we are on the same page, sorry for the misunderstanding! Most people are meat eaters.... I applaud those that are not. Didn't expect to find any veggies on here :P

  • Humanoid2 - 2011-08-25 13:23

    When are these butchers going to realise they are killing our world???

  • Toni - 2011-08-25 13:26

    While i have no intention of diminishing the horror and agonies the Rhino have suffered for illogical fantasy medication and human vanity, where is all the anger, disgust and attention for the thousands of animals we torture, mutilate and kill daily for a burger, breakfast or braai, belt or bag?

  • tut - 2011-08-25 13:28

    Maybe the ANC must turn to the East (because clearly the west are rather unfavourable in their eyes) and ask their new found friends to go easy on our Rhino population?

  • sherry.woods2 - 2011-08-25 13:35

    In the sad light of ABSA's passing, we need to donate a cent for every word we've all written about this horrific event. We've all written on Facebook, Twitter, here and elsewhere. It's truly wonderful that we all care so much and are willing to commit to fight for these and other creatures that are our and the rest of Africa's heritage. But, we need to put our money where our words are. Every anti-poaching unit needs our financial support. So, while we mourn the senseless loss of ABSA and the other rhino slaughtered at Aquila, we must assist where we can financially to enable these organisations to grow. If we don't, there is a future ahead where our veld will be empty of the life forms we love. I don't want to imagine that scenario in our future!

      LP - 2011-08-25 13:41

      Money I don't have, but a 303 rifle and plenty bullets to help guard these pre-historic animals against ..... o sh1t I cannot even think of an appropriate name for these devil spawn, useless waste of oxygen users, lower than dog-sh1t, gob-infected and whatever other derogatory name I can call them.

  • Alastair - 2011-08-25 13:41

    Cant In this day and age some clever scientist come up with something to paint on the horn that would impregnate it and make it worthless (poisonous)as an aphrodisiac but harmless to the Rhino and ultimately discredit the supply of Rhino Horn to the trade

  • pugwash - 2011-08-25 13:45

    Oh my, this is such sad news. RIP ABSA and condolences to all who tried so hard to keep him alive :-(((

  • SandyMandy - 2011-08-25 13:54

    I am so sad. Rest in peac Absa and son. Thank you Lord for the survival of one of Absa's children. Since this story appeared in the media, i have been hoping that these criminals would be caught and that they genitals would be cut off just as they brutally cut off the hornS of the defenseless Rhinos. These Asians come to our country to kill our rhinos for some stupid reason which has not even been scientificall proven. I think it is time for every South African to take up arms against these poachers otherwise they might slowly kill off our heritage. In memory of Absa and all the other thousands of rhinos that have been brutally killed, we should start an agressive attack on these elements in society who assist these Asians in killing our precious rhinos.Sies to every South African who is assisting these Asians. You are killing the heritage of your country, your children and future generations. These big, softnatured animals cannot defend themselves, so we have to do it for them. TAKE A STAND SOUTH AFRICA.