A group of poachers made their way into the Mago National Park in Ethiopia on 1 June and poached six elephants for their ivory. The animals were found with their tusks removed.
The park’s chief warden, Ganabul Bulmi, said to Associated Press: ‘It was a mass killing. We haven’t seen anything like this before.’
The elephants were all from the same herd and were attacked while drinking along the Omo river, according to BBC.
Bulmi explained to the BBC that over 30 bullets were used to take down one of the elephants.
‘It has also proved difficult to apprehend the perpetrators because the locals who live in the area are armed and were not willing to engage officials,’ he said.
Director for trafficking and control at the Wildlife Conservation Authority Daniel Pawlos explained that Ethiopia rarely experiences poaching. ‘Last year we documented up to 10 elephant killings. But whenever there’s demand, that triggers illegal poaching.’
The difference with this incident is the large number of elephants that were killed in a single day.
5 elephants poached by armed groups in 1 night in Mago National Park , Lower Omo, #Ethiopia. Ivory tusks nowhere to be found. The impacts of #COVID19 on our wildlife and nature conservation efforts are going to felt incredibly hard. #wildlife #conservation #elephants #africa pic.twitter.com/JKKO2Ufs0r
— Greta Francesca Iori (@TheItaliopian) June 1, 2020
Image credit: Twitter/ @TheItaliopian