KZN man killed by buffalo while ‘hunting’ it

A KwaZulu-Natal man was killed by a buffalo during 'a hunt' in KwaZulu-Natal. File photo.
A KwaZulu-Natal man was killed by a buffalo during 'a hunt' in KwaZulu-Natal. File photo.
Image: Stu Porter African Wildlife Photography

A KwaZulu-Natal man was killed by a buffalo during “a hunt” after it escaped from the Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP) near the Mashiya gate on Sunday.

Ezemvelo CEO Sihle Mkhize confirmed the incident on Tuesday. He said reports had been received of a buffalo seen outside HiP on Sunday morning.

Mkhize said as inclement weather prevented the helicopter from taking off, the community decided to hunt the buffalo.

He said field rangers stationed at Siqwashi outpost heard a gunshot outside HiP. When they responded, they found a group of people gathered around the body of a man. The man was killed by the buffalo.

 “I want to express our profound sadness over the loss of one of our community members. The incident serves as a stark reminder of the inherent risks associated with living near wildlife, despite our best efforts to ensure safety measures are in place.

"At HiP the safety and wellbeing of our visitors and surrounding communities are our top priorities. We have robust protocols in place to minimise potential risks and ensure the protection of both humans and wildlife. However, nature can be unpredictable and tragic events remind us of the need for constant vigilance and ongoing efforts to enhance safety measures.”

Mkhize said they are cooperating fully with local authorities and conducting a thorough investigation to understand the circumstances surrounding the tragedy. 

He said their team is committed to learning from the experience and implementing any necessary changes to prevent similar incidents.

“We understand this tragedy has deeply affected our community, and we are here to offer our support and assistance in any way we can,” said Mkhize

He appealed to all communities adjacent to Ezemvelo protected areas to reflect on the importance of co-existing harmoniously with the natural world around them. 

Mkhize said it was too early to speculate how the buffalo might have escaped from HiP. 

Ezemvelo has been dealing with poachers who cut the fence to access HiP. 

Mkhize said they had to employ fence liners who patrol the fence every day.  Unfortunately, he said, they cannot be everywhere at the same time. 

“HiP deals with between three to five fence cutting incidents on a monthly basis.”

A community activist from the area did not respond to queries. 



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