After Paying $350K, Texan Kills Black Rhino

It was 'an emotional thing,' Corey Knowlton says
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted May 20, 2015 3:08 AM CDT
Texas Auction Winner Kills Black Rhino
Corey Knowlton, winner of a rare permit to hunt endangered black rhinos in Namibia, speaks during an interview in Dallas last year.   (AP Photo/, File)

The "kill a rhino" stage of the Dallas Safari Club's "kill a rhino to save the rhinos" plan is now complete. Corey Knowlton, the Texas hunter who bid $350,000 for a permit to bag a black rhino in Namibia, killed one on Monday. He was accompanied by a CNN camera crew that documented the multiday hunt, which took a farcical turn when one of the aging, aggressive rhinos designated "high-priority threats to the herd" died of natural causes before Knowlton could reach it. "Any time you take an animal's life it's an emotional thing," he told CNN after shooting another rhino on the government's approved list. (The controversial theory behind the hunt: Knowlton would kill off a rhino bull that could no longer reproduce, but that was still a danger to younger males.)

Knowlton received death threats after winning the permit auction, but he stresses that the money will go to rhino conservation efforts. "I want to see the black rhino as abundant as it can be," he told CNN before making the kill. "I believe in the survival of the species." There are an estimated 5,000 black rhinos alive today. After the hunt, Knowlton said that with all the criticism it attracted, "I don't think it could have brought more awareness to the black rhino." Anti-hunting groups filed litigation to try to stop Knowlton from bringing the rhino's carcass back to the US, Lone Star Outdoor News reports, but the US Fish and Wildlife Service has given him permission to import the trophy. (This rhino might just be the loneliest guy in the world.)

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