Lions have mauled to death suspected poachers who entered a South African wildlife reserve to kill rhinos.
Nick Fox, owner of the Sibuya Game Reserve in Eastern Cape province, said human remains were found Tuesday along with a high-powered rifle, wire cutters and other equipment.
Fox said on Facebook that at least three poachers infiltrated the reserve late Sunday or early Monday. He said it is clear that “the poachers had walked into a pride of six lions and some, if not all,” were killed.
Fox said the handler of an anti-poaching dog heard a “loud commotion” coming from the lions early Monday.
He said the reserve’s wildlife veterinarian darted the lions so police forensic investigators could search for evidence.
South Africa is home to more than 80 percent of the world’s rhinos, whose population has been depleted by poaching for buyers in Vietnam and China where rhino horn is coveted as an ingredient in traditional medicine.
More than 1,000 rhinos were killed in South Africa last year.
— With files from Reuters