Slaughter of the rhinos: Four animals found dead with their horns hacked off by poachersFour rhinos poisoned and dehorned in in Eastern Cape, South AfricaFour rhinos shot and dehorned in Assam, northeastern India.Two rhinos in the Indian attack dead
| UPDATED:20:36 GMT, 27 September 2012
Four rhinos have been slaughtered for their horns at a reserve in South Africa, it emerged today.
Grim pictures show the bloodied remains of the animals lying close together at the Lalibela game reserve, near Grahamstown, in the Eastern Cape as forensic teams examined them.
It is believed that the rhinos – a 28-year-old cow, an eight-year-old pregnant bull, a second eight-year old bull, and a male, three, may have been darted before their horns were clinically removed.
Carnage: These four rhinos were thought to have been darted before having their horns hacked off
Outrage: The killiing of rhino gets widespread condemnation
The deaths come in the same week that four rhinos were found shot and dehorned in Assam, north-east India.
Two of the animals died, including a female found terribly mutilated but still alive at Kaziranga National Park
Vets fought a desperate battle to save her but eventually succumbed to her injuries.
Brutal attacks: The number of rhinos killed in South Africa this year is now over 400
Brutal: The examination clearly found that the rhinos were killed for their horns
Footage of her lying stricken on the ground was shown across India and prompted outrage.
The attack on the one-horned rhino sparked outrage in the state of Assam, home to the world”s largest concentration of the rare rhino.
Footage of the bleeding rhino with its horn removed and a cut to its ear was broadcast on local television.
Heavy rains across Assam have caused flooding in recent days that killed 18 people and forced 1.4 million to flee their homes.
Much of the 480 square kilometer (185 square mile) Kaziranga National Park was also flooded.
Many other animals migrated to higher ground. The rhino was one of them, leaving the park for a highland across a busy highway, where trailing guards lost track of it, Chand said.
The rhino was then shot by poachers, who sawed off its horn while it was still alive.
Horrific: Villagers look at a wounded endangered one horned Rhinoceros that was butchered by poachers in the jungle in Assam
Today, forest guards in the Jagdamba Tea Estate near the Kuthori region, of Assam were trying to catch another rare rhinoceros that was shot and dehorned.
Two other rhinos had died after being attacked by poachers.
Back in South Africa, the deaths of the four rhinos had provoked fury. There have already been 400 of the animals killed in the country this year.
All of them have died on private reserves, which is particularly alarming as security is usually better at these sites than at state-run parks.
Desperate bid to save: Villagers and vets failed to rescue the endangered animal after heartless poachers ripped off its horn
Vernon Wait, marketing director at the game reserve, said that the four animals found dead today had probably been poisoned.
“Unlike usual incidents of poaching where the horns are hacked off with pangas or axes, in this case, the horns were ‘clinically’ cut off,’ he told South Africa Press Association.
He described the attack as ‘very professional.’