An alleged poacher was found dead and likely killed by an elephant on Thursday, according to a South African national park.
Kruger National Park tweeted a “suspected poacher” was killed by an elephant and “left behind by his accomplices.” No animals were killed in the immediate area.
Poaching is the illegal hunting or capturing of wild animals. The park warned “it is dangerous to hunt illegally” in the area.
“Criminals stand to lose their lives and freedom,” Kruger National Park tweeted. The park, located in northeastern South Africa, is the nation’s largest national park, according to Britannica.com.
Poaching has significantly impacted elephants’ health and evolution, in Mozambique’s Gorongosa National Park female African elephants are born without ivory tusks. Scientists believe it’s an evolutionary result of the brutal poaching and killing of the animals during the country’s civil war.
One poacher trampled, another missing: Elephants trample suspected poacher in South African park
In Gorongosa in the 1970s, 18.5% of female elephants didn’t have tusks and today that number is 51%, according to recent research from the journal Science. Researchers found tuskless elephants are five times more likely to survive because they evade poachers.
However South African National Parks rangers are cracking down on poachers in the area. There was a nearly 30% increase in the number of poachers arrested in the park between July and September 2021, according to South African National Parks.
Contributed: Scott Gleeson
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