Ricochet News

Karma? Lions kill suspected poachers at Sibuya Game Reserve

Jul 5, 2018
Karma? Lions kill suspected poachers at Sibuya Game Reserve

Sometime during the night on Sunday and early hours of Monday,  a group of at least three poachers entered the Sibuya Game Reserve.

"They were armed with, amongst other things, a high powered rifle with a silencer, an axe, wire cutters and had food supplies for a number of days – all the hallmarks of a gang intent on killing rhino and removing their horns," Reserve owner, Nick Fox, told RNEWS.

"One of our anti-poaching dogs alerted her handler at about 4.30 am on Monday morning that something was amiss.

"At the same time, the handler heard a loud commotion coming from the lions, so he suspected that this was what had alerted her and was not concerned."

Fox said that it is not unusual to hear them at night.

"However, it now appears likely that the dog had been alerted by something else out of the ordinary coming from the lions.

"At about 4.30pm on Tuesday, one of our field guides on game drive alerted the Anti-Poaching Unit that there appeared to be human remains as well as other items in the immediate vicinity of the lions.

"I was immediately called to the scene where along with the APU we found the high powered rifle, gloves, wire cutters and the remains of a back pack with food, water and other supplies," he described.

"We immediately alerted the Indalo (Association of Eastern Cape Game Reserves) Anti-Poaching Cluster and the Police.

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

Fox said that as it was already dark it was not possible to investigate the area until first light at which time we arranged for the Reserve's vet to dart the entire pride of lions so that Police forensic teams assisted by our Anti-poaching unit could comb the immediate area for clues.

"At this stage it is not clear exactly how many poachers were killed but the Police forensic team continues to investigate."