Vets removing rhino’s horn discover a perfect heart shape running through its core

They're doing this to protect it from poachers
May 22, 2017 3:13 pm Last Updated: June 19, 2018 4:23 pm

The black rhino’s horn has long been seen as a highly prized item for illegal poachers and a menacing weapon for predators.

But at the center of one rhino’s horn, conservationists in South Africa found a remarkable discovery.

As vets removed its horn to protect him from poachers, they were stunned to discover a perfect heart at the base of the animal’s colossal horn.

A young boy shows off the rhino’s horn that was removed in a legal de-horning process and revealed the shape of a heart inside.

The extraordinary finding clearly shows a brilliantly dark black love heart shape in the centre of the milky white animal horn.

The magnificent rhino had its horn removed as part of a legal de-horning programme by Dr WIlliam Fowlds.

The act of de-horning the rhino, which took place at the Kragga Kamma Game Park in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, is designed to protect it from poachers.

By removing the horn, it is hoped hunters will be deterred by the lack of financial incentive to kill the wild animal.

The extraordinary finding clearly shows a brilliantly dark black love heart shape in the centre of the milky white animal horn.

The incredible pictures of the rhino’s horn were snapped by photographer Luc Hosten, 56.

He said: ‘Rhino poaching is rife in South Africa, and there were rumours that the game park was going to be visited by poachers.

‘Surveillance began, and it was eventually decided to remove the horns and spread the information so that poachers would stay away.

‘This process was professionally done, by staff at Kragga Kamma and a team of vets – the horns are removed using battery powered tools and a chainsaw, and the animals are monitored throughout.

‘Amazingly, there was a perfect imprint of a heart on one of the rhino’s horns.

‘It is sad that we have to de-horn rhinos to protect what we love from unscrupulous poachers.

‘We love our rhinos, but to save them we have to maim them.

‘It was a great success – all the animals were successfully treated, and back and active straight afterwards.’

Watch the dehorning in the video below: