Gored to death by nyala

2013-01-19 00:00

BELA BELA — An elderly nature lover bled to death yesterday after being gored by a nyala bull.

Hettie Gerber (79) was dead minutes after an artery in her right leg was pierced by the aninal’s horn while she was feeding it on her smallholding.

Every morning, Gerber, who lived alone on the plot, fed rabbits, chickens and birds in a field a short walk from her house.

Her daughter-in-law, Christa Graham, said the nyala bull lived on a koppie near the house and sometimes came down to the field, jumped the low fence and ate some of the rabbit food.

It is unclear what happened yesterday. It is speculated that perhaps the nyala was picking up grass with its horns, when it caught Gerber in the thigh.

Workers on the plot found Gerber at about 7.30 am. They carried her out of the field and sat her in a chair nearby while they went to the neighbours for help.

Gerber was already dead when paramedics arrived. “She had lost a lot of blood,” said one.

Graham said she had spoken to her mother-in-law at about 7 am, when she wished her grandaughter, Graham’s daughter Claudine Venter (28), well for her first round of chemotherapy for cancer, which took place yesterday.

She said Gerber loved nature and wildlife.

“She loved living there,” she said, adding that people should remember that that a wild animal will always remain wild.

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