Kruger Park moves 70 of its 500 rhino to safety
The park says it often moves rhino to other parks at this time of year to stimulate growth.
JOHANNESBURG - As the holiday season approaches t he Kruger National Park says it has only been able to move 70 of its 500 rhino to safety this year.
The park says it often moves rhino to other parks at this time of year to stimulate growth of the rhino population in other parts of the country.
Recent moves have formed part of anti-rhino poaching initiatives to move the animals away from identified poaching hot spots for the holidays.
The area has borne the brunt of poaching related activities with 672 rhino killed in the park this year alone.
However officials say they have not been able to move all 500 rhino as the process is a lengthy and intensive one.
Spokesperson William Mabasa says, "It's now summer, the weather is not very good for things like that but it doesn't stop here. We're going to continue next year and the year after next until we've reached the number that we would like to move."
Latest statistics from the Environmental Affairs Department's reveal that more than 1,000 rhino have been killed this year.
Figures for this year now stand at 1,020 exceeding the numbers for 2013.
While the Kruger Park 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.