Over 100 rhino poached in SA in past month

2013-10-25 12:01
(Picture: Green Renaissance)

(Picture: Green Renaissance)

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Johannesburg - Poachers have killed more than 100 rhino in South Africa over the past four weeks, pushing the death toll so far this year towards 800, official figures showed on Friday.

"The number of rhinos poached for their horns in South Africa since January 2013 has increased to 790," the environment ministry said in a statement.

Killings have surged in recent years to feed black market demand in Asia for their horns. In 2007 there were only 13 reported incidents.

Conservationists have warned a surge in rhino poaching for their horns in SA was becoming critical, with the number of rhino killed set to exceed births, leading to an overall population decline.

The Kruger National Park, which borders Mozambique, is worst affected, having lost 476 rhino since January.

Rhino horn, the same matter as human fingernails, is a status symbol in nations like China, Vietnam and Laos where it is believed to have healing or aphrodisiac properties.

SA is home to around 80% of the world's rhino population, estimated at more than 25 000.

Read more on:    rhino poaching
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