Over 1,000 rhino killed this year

The Department of Environmental Affairs says 1,020 rhino have been killed, exceeding the numbers for 2013.

The Department of Environmental Affairs says 1,020 rhino have been killed, exceeding the numbers for 2013. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Anti- rhino poaching organisations have reacted with shock at the Environmental Affairs Department's revelation that more than 1,000 rhino have been killed this year.

The department says the figures for this year now stand at 1,020 exceeding the numbers for 2013.

The Kruger National Park, where 672 rhino have been killed, has been the hardest hit.

Another 110 have been killed by poachers in Limpopo, 84 in KwaZulu-Natal, 70 in Mpumalanga, 58 in the North West and 15 in the Eastern Cape.

Rhino Force's Chris Thorpe says these numbers are appalling.

"The more South Africans can get behind the cause the better, we need to sort out our own back yard."

Last week four suspected rhino poachers were arrested at a private game farm in Lephalale in Limpopo.

Officials said one of the suspects was apprehended following a tip-off.

An unlicensed rifle was also recovered.

(Edited by Refilwe Pitjeng)