Elephant crushes South African hunter to death in Zimbabwe (PHOTOS)
Harare - A South African big-game hunter was crushed to death when an elephant picked him up and then fell on him after being shot, Zimbabwean officials and media reports said Monday.
Theunis Botha, 51, a professional hunter who specialised in hunting with hounds, died on Friday in western Zimbabwe.
He was leading a group of hunters on state-owned land in the Gwayi region when they disturbed a breeding herd and were charged by four female elephants.
One elephant lifted Botha up with her trunk, and a fellow hunter shot the animal dead, the News24 website said.
As the elephant collapsed, it crushed Botha, giving him fatal injuries.
His body was taken to Hwange mortuary.
|Theunis Botha. Photo credit: Facebook|
|Theunis Botha and his wife|
Simukai Nyasha, spokesman for Zimbabwe's parks and wildlife management authority, confirmed the death to AFP.
"The unfortunate incident happened when the hunting party got in the middle of a breeding herd of elephants and were attacked by female elephants," he said, adding that the hunt was authorised.
A spokeswoman for Botha's company "Big Game Safaris", based in Limpopo, South Africa, declined to comment to AFP, but said a statement would be issued later this week.
Botha led regular "trophy hunts" for clients, often from America, who pay thousands of dollars to shoot leopards, giraffes, elephants and other animals.
A father of five, Botha's family-run company was set up in 1983 and operates in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique and Namibia.
Another South African was killed by a crocodile last month while hunting in southern Zimbabwe.