Published: Thu, July 05, 2018
Science | By

Three suspected poachers mauled to death by lions in Eastern Cape

Three suspected poachers mauled to death by lions in Eastern Cape

"There is so little left that they don't know exactly how many people were killed, we suspect three because we found three sets of shoes and three sets of gloves".

The hunters were torn to shreds by the big cats at the Sibuya Game Reserve in Kenton-on-Sea, South Africa, where staffers discovered bloodied body parts, including a head and limbs Tuesday, the Daily Express reported.

"We found enough body parts and three pairs of empty shoes, which suggest to us that the lions ate at least three of them but it is thick bush and there could be more", said Nick Fox, the game reserve owner, according to the Mail. "They use the rifle to shoot the animal and the axe to remove the horn".

Police spokesperson Captain Mali Govender said that investigators and specialists combed the scene and managed to retrieve remains which were taken by the department of health for forensic testing Wednesday morning.

Fox said the supplies were "the hallmarks of a gang intent on killing rhino [s] and removing their horns".

"Clearly, the poachers had walked into a pride of six lions and some, if not all had been killed", he said.

Police forensics officers were on the scene conducting tests on the remains of the victims, Mr Fox added. "However, it now appears likely that the dog had been alerted by something else out of the ordinary coming from the lions", Fox wrote.

In 2016, three rhinos were killed when poachers sneaked into the park, shooting them and cutting off their horns.

Staff at the Sibuya Game Reserve, in Eastern Province, South Africa, called in a helicopter to search the area for more poachers.

Fox said that the reserve was still open to guests despite the incident.

Nick added: 'The lions may have eaten more of them it is hard to tell as the area is very thick with bush and you can not be sure what they have taken off to feed on elsewhere.

Nine rhinos have been killed with high-caliber hunting rifles at Eastern Cape reserves so far this year.

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