Madelein Potgieter News December 5, 2017

Second time in a week that our team is called to check on a rhino carcass!

The first thing that surprised us when we arrived was the position of the rhino. The animal was lying down with its front legs under its chest, it was as if it was sleeping.

Then, when we looked for body injuries, we realised that the job that those poachers did, was very cleaned: the rhino had been killed with a SINGLE BULLET STRAIGHT IN THE HEAD!!

We found a cartridge at approximately 25 meters from the carcass, which is a very close distance to approach a rhino, and so dangerous. With all the signs that we observed, we think that the female rhino was asleep when she was shot, and also that the poachers were well trained and had very good skills in shooting!

Even thought we found a cartridge, we need to find the bullet that was inside the rhino, so that if this case goes in court we have a real proof that it is this bullet that killed the rhino.

So, the autopsy started… the metal detector wasn’t showing any sign of a bullet in the body… But we were sure it was there as we could put a stick through the bullet hole. Maybe it was too deep inside for the metal detector to sense the bullet. We decided then to open the carcass towards the direction of the bullet hole.

Unfortunately, after all our efforts and determination, we couldn’t find the bullet.