Zimbabwe is set to employ a new strategy to ensuring that dozens of rhino in its national parks are protected from poachers: it is removing their sought-after horns.
At least 100 rhino in state-run parks across the African country will be dehorned, a conservation group was quoted as saying by Reuters on Tuesday.
“We want to send a message to poachers that they will not get much if they come to Zimbabwe,” said Lisa Maribini, director of operations at Aware Trust Zimbabwe, one of two organizations assisting the government in dehorning the animals.
Another 600-odd rhino reside in private game reserves, which may or may not choose to dehorn the animals, she added.
Similar measures were taken in 2010.
Poaching is a major problem in Africa, with conservation groups estimating that a record 1,305 rhino were killed across the continent last year. Of those, 50 were killed in Zimbabwe, the World Wildlife Fund said, double that of the previous year.