87 Elephants Poisoned in Zimbabwe
Poachers use cyanide
Outside's long reads email newsletter features our strongest writing, most ambitious reporting, and award-winning storytelling about the outdoors. Sign up today.
In a mass-poaching, 87 elephants were poisoned with industrial cyanide, authorities in Zimbabwe told the Associated Press Wednesday. The bodies were found with their tusks removed.
“Industrial cyanide used in gold mining was put in remote water holes and on salty ground that the elephants like to lick after drinking the water,” Park spokesperson Caroline Washaya-Moyo told NBC News. “The poison was killing them and they were taking the tusks.”
The poison might have also killed lions, leopards, vultures, and other birds who frequented the watering holes.
The World Wildlife Fund reports that 2011 was the worst year for poaching since the 1980s. They expect this year to be even worse.