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Man Who Dedicated Life to Killing Elephants Killed By Elephant

Theunis Botha died on Friday at 51, after 28 years as a famous South African big game hunter. He was leading a group of huntsman in Hwange National Park, when they accidentally came upon a group of breeding elephants. Three of the elephants charged the group.


MSN reports that Botha fired his rifle on the charging cows, but a fourth swept in and surprised him from the side. She lifted Botha with her trunk and was shot by another hunter. Dead, she collapsed on top of Botha, killing him.

Botha was known for his work developing “Monteira hunts,” which uses packs of dogs to drive big game towards hunters so it’s easier to shoot their trophies, a style first developed in Europe. His specialty was actually leopard and lion hunting, not elephants, though according to the Washington Post, photos on his Facebook page show him standing over an elephant’s body and also holding ivory tusks. Botha left behind a wife, who lives on the hunting farm they built together, and their five children.

Contributing Writer, writing my first book for the Dial Press called The Lonely Hunter, follow me on Twitter @alutkin

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I’m only sad that the elephant that killed him died.