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Wildlife Turns Tables on Poachers

A few of humanity's worst citizens - poachers - snuck in to the Kruger National Park in South Africa in the middle of the night. They'd planned on checking traps, but instead found themselves in the deadly gaze of angry hippopotamuses. Hippos are the animal kingdom's number one killer of humans in Africa, so the men scattered. Two made it out alive; the third's remains were found, ostensibly devoured by lions.
This story should serve as a cautionary tale for any would-be poachers considering a career in illegal wildlife trade. While authorities may have their hands full when it comes to stopping [them], there remains a more natural form of justice, lurking among the wildlife so often pillaged--and in this case justice, like dinner, was served.

Link |  BBC Brasil Link (Well-Fed Lion Photo: laherenger's Photostream)

Angry hippos and hungry lions make a great team! Go Team!

Fool: "But Felix! Them poachers are jist tryin' to feed there famlies!!!"

Felix: "And after they eat their way through all the animals, will they turn to cannibalism just "to feed their families"?
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@Jennie: (from The Straight Dope)--

"The hippo is extremely aggressive, unpredictable and unafraid of humans, upsetting boats sometimes without provocation and chomping the occupants with its huge canine teeth and sharp incisors. Most human deaths occur when the victim gets between the hippo and deep water or between a mother and her calf."

They are also more agile than they look and can run up to 18 mph. So, yeah... trampling is a possibility.
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While I'm not fond of poaching in the least, and really do love animals (vegetarian and everything) I can't say I'm heartened to hear a person was killed by wildlife. Poachers are often very poor. It's a career choice of desperation that would probably go away if the countries where it happens could provide better options for their citizens.

I haven't got a lot of sympathy for him, but I don't think it's a crime one could reasonably consider worthy of the death penalty. Unless you think animals are >/= humans. I certainly don't.

I'm sure there are some people who are in it for the thrill, but most people would prefer something that didn't include close encounters with hippos.
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@Felix, I'm sure I don't have to tell you that they don't eat the lions and rhinos. They sell the parts to people who pay top dollar for them, often leaving very edible or useful parts behind for the vultures.

They use the money unscrupulous Westerners/Asian pharmacists pay them to feed their families.
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Whatever these poachers have for economical reasons- They still behave criminally moronically stupid. Because they hunt these animals to extinction. And so they rid themselves of their own income. I mean, how stupid can you be?

So if now and then any of these endangered animals takes out a poacher, I say let them eat with good appetite!
...As far as I'm concerned- Serves them right.
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poachers = human beings.

Yay for Western privilege and the devaluing of human life! Whatever happened to fines and prison sentences? Oh, and better options in the first damn place.
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Also, whatever happened to hating on PETA for valuing animals above people? Isn't this the same thing?

I'm not saying poaching isn't bad! I'm saying that celebrating the death of a person who was killing animals, not people, is never good. I don't mourn the death of cattle. Being rare doesn't elevate an elephant to the status of a person.

Frankly, you should all be ashamed of yourselves.
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Jeez, there's always got to be someone huh? Cola, these guys are destabilizing the natural environment and endangering the survival of a species. In the long run would you rather have no lions left or a few dead poachers? Not only was their behaviour illegal it was dangerous they accepted the risks. Nobody is valuing animal life over people, but the guy deserved what was coming to him and in the end we have a positive result for nature.
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Jeez, fz! It's like I said poaching was a totally legit thing to do if you're poor and crap!

I said it should be punished with jail time and fines, not death. People don't poach because it's OMG SO FUN! Poachers die all the time, and the risk, as you say, is known. It is a career of desperation. But that shouldn't matter. People killing animals is not murder. People are not disposable, not to make a point, not for any reason (although neither are animals, but it's not murder to kill an animal, or we would be executing people who hunt deer).

Furthermore, in terms of the sustainability angle, these people would certainly be out of a job if all of these animals went extinct, but does the fact that we are killing ourselves slowly by using the finite resource of crude oil stop us from using it? How about coal burning? Strip mining?

Much of the poverty in Africa is a direct result of Western colonialism. You'll notice that lions and elephants weren't endangered until fairly recently, as well. Poverty is directly linked to practices like illegal poaching. It's hard to sell the idea of saving an endangered species in much of Africa, India, and China where people are literally starving and there are no jobs, little infrastructure, and no education.

No matter how many poachers die, because of the desperate circumstances that lead to poaching in the first place, there are going to be people who try. That's why one dead poacher is no reason to celebrate, unless you value animals over people.

The only thing that will stop poaching are better opportunities.

And before anyone else assumes I don't care about endangered species, check out my comments here.
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Cola, this poacher was killed by an animal not another person. That's not murder either, it's the result of the risk that he took. Rangers in Africas' National parks can use deadly force against poachers. That is not murder, it is justice.
Can't we agree to disagree?
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Cole... they didn't get the "death penalty". Nobody decided to feed them to a lion. They were doing something that they knew what a)illegal and b)dangerous.
There are other ways these guys can make money. You're suggesting that the end justifies the means, which is a whole nother debate, but this one is pretty much summed up. All they were trying to do was kill some animals. And they got killed. I'm not happy that they died, but they definately deserved it. They went there to do harm, illegaly, and me a lion. Sorry, but I really have no sympathy. They shouldn't have been there, they certainly knew that, so good riddance to a couple of poacher/morons. We didn't need them in the gene pool anyway.
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That's the problem right there. What if it weren't a killer hippo, but an irascible Texan who shot the poacher on his front lawn?

Yes, there are other job opportunities for poachers. They could become pirates or telemarketers.

What's sad is that there's still a market for poachers to sell their stuff.
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ted, you jest, surely! The pirates have no idea how the magazine clearinghouse got your phone number.

Cola - standing up for the life of a poacher. Impressive. I get what you're saying, but, I think we can be comforted that more people are cheering for the animals. That's a good sign. What if everybody got angry that a hippo killed a poacher?
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What I don't get is why in every case, even of that of despicable behaviour (@ cola) some folks still insist that human life is supreme above all others.
We humans are doing a great job of slowly destroying ourselves as well as many other species, animal and plant alike. Humans are capable of great genocide against ourselves, all for the sake of human ego. While humans are capable of doing great good, the great good which is done is nearly almost always aimed at undoing the evils other humans have perpetrated!
Aniamls are devoid of the ability to inflict the immeasurable degree of suffering which of humans insist on inflicting on living creatures -human and nonhuman- every single day, either for money or ego or both. Our intelligence for developing technical gadgets, language and awarenesses are completely worthless when used for destructive purposes- which our race has been insisting on doing on the grandest of scales possible since anyone can remember, and continues to this very day. And that is just the flat truth about ourselves- Face It!!! So why, I ask you- are non-human animals always considered inferior in your eyes? If we had real brains -and if we could get around our own egos- we could actually learn something from them.
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