Poachers kill rhino for its horn at French zoo

Poachers kill rhino for its horn at French zoo

The French government published a decree in August 2016, prohibiting the transport or sale of ivory taken from an elephant or rhinoceros horn.

Vince was a part of the Southern white rhino subspecies, and because they are considered extremely endangered, reproduction and conservation in zoos is essential. It appears the poachers were disturbed, and fled, before they could remove Vince's second horn.

The two other rhinos in the enclosure at the time, a 37-year-old called female called Gracie and a five-year-old male called Bruno, were not physically harmed.

The rhino was shot three times in the head.

"Vince was found this morning by the keeper who was very attached to him and is deeply upset".

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However, Keita's body was discovered almost a month after that K9 search by a group of teenagers passing through the area. On November 26, his family reported him missing, with Keita having apparently left home early in the morning.

According to Le Parisien, this is the first crime of its type on an animal in captivity in Europe.

A lot of them live in South Africa, where there have been hundreds of rhinos killed in recent years. Products made with the poached horns are sold as cures for hangovers, laryngitis and even aphrodisiacs, despite an abundance of evidence that they are totally useless.

Vince and another rhino, Bruno, arrived at the French zoo in March 2015 from the Netherlands.

It's believed the poachers broke into the zoo by breaking past an outer gate near the site's "African Plain" area, before breaking two more doors at the rhinoceros enclosure, staff said. It's not easy to kill a rhino weighing several tonnes just like that.

Although a United Nations convention prohibits the global trade of horns and tusks, they are still in high demand, particularly in China and other Asian countries where rhino horn - typically consumed in powdered form - is claimed to have aphrodisiac and medicinal properties.

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