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Gang of poachers eaten by lions as they try to slaughter herd of Rhinos

SOUTH AFRICA: A human head and a number of bloodied body parts and limbs were found near the scene after at least three illegal hunters broke into a South African game reserve to slaughter a herd of rhinos was attacked and EATEN by a pride of hungry lions.

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

A vet then had to tranquilize the six lions so police could go inside and recover the remains of the mauled poachers.

Owner Nick Fox, 60, said:

“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.

“They came heavily armed with hunting rifles and axes which we have recovered and enough food to last them for several days so we suspect they were after all of our rhinos here.

“They were clearly intent on killing rhinos and cutting off their horns.

“But the lions are our watchers and guardians and they picked the wrong pride and became a meal.

“Whilst we have saddened at any loss of life the poachers came here to kill our animals and this sends out a very clear message to any other poachers that you will not always be the winner.”

A police spokeswoman confirmed the grim discovery was made in the lion camp.

Captain Mali Govender said: “We do not know identities but firearms have been taken by the police and will be sent to the ballistics laboratory to see if they have been used in poaching before.”

The game reserve is home to the Big Five, elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and leopard and is set in 30 square miles.

In 2016 the reserve lost three rhinos when poachers got into the park and shot them dead for their horns.

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