Elephant tramples SA man in Zim

2010-10-21 07:21

A Zimbabwean conservation official has pointed the finger at poachers after an elephant trampled a South African man to death in Zimbabwe.

Johnny Rodrigues, chairperson of the Zimbabwean Conservation Task Force, said elephants in Zimbabwe have been so traumatised by poachers that they charge at anyone.

Don Hornsby (55) from Bedfordview in Johannesburg, was attacked by an elephant last week at Mutsadona near Lake Kariba, while apparently trying to take a picture of the animal.

“Don and some friends were fishing from the bank of the lake when the elephants came to drink water. He was running to fetch his camera when the elephant charged at him.

“Usually the rule at the lake is that people may only catch fish from their boats, and not from the banks – because the animals drink there. I don’t know why they were on the bank. As a passionate conservationist, Don would have been especially aware of the ways of nature and the tension of the elephants,” Rodrigues said.

“It’s so sad that a man who cared about and invested so much in the conservation of Zimbabwe’s wildlife had to die like this. But I do believe that he would have preferred to die in nature, where he was at his happiest.”

Hornsby’s remains will arrive in South Africa this week. A memorial service will be held on Saturday in Johannesburg.

According to the department of international relations and co-operation, the incident has not been reported to them.

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