South Africa’s Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, Ms Barbara Creecy, has released the rhino poaching numbers for 2019. According to the Minister, a total of 594 rhinos got illegally killed by poachers in South Africa in 2019. This is a decrease of 175 rhino compared to 2018 when 769 rhinos were killed for their horns. Out of the 594 killed rhinos, a total of 327 rhinos were poached in the Kruger National Park.
From January to December 2019, 178 alleged poachers were arrested within Kruger National Park. At a national level, 332 arrests were effected in respect of both rhino poaching and rhino horn trafficking and in excess of 57 major investigations were undertaken across the country. A total of 85 firearms were recovered during the year.
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With regard to elephant poaching, South Africa’s Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries reports that 31 elephant have been poached in South Africa in 2019 – 30 animals in Kruger National Park and 1 in Mapungubwe National Park. This is a decrease in the number of elephant poached in 2018, when 71 were killed for their tusks.