A rhinoceros was shot and killed by poachers who broke into a French zoo and cut off his horn with a chainsaw Monday night.
Vince, a four-year-old white rhinoceros at Parc Zoologique de Thoiry, was shot five times in the head, according to French investigators.
Rhino horns, while illegal in many nations, are extremely valuable ingredients in folk medicines. Horns can sell for up to $65,000 per kilogram. White rhino horns tend to weigh about 4 kilograms, according to PoachingFacts.com.
Here's the zoo's announcement of the attack.
The killing of a rhinoceros at Thoiry is criminal. It is time countries outlaw the trade in ivory and horn as I have done in France.
Vince's second horn was also partially cut. Investigators believe the poachers stopped either because they were disturbed or because their saw stopped working, Sky News reports. The Thoiry zoo said this is believed to be the first attack of its kind at a European zoo.
Vince was born Sept. 22, 2012 in the Netherlands. He arrived at the Thoiry zoo in March 2015.
The zoo had security cameras in place and five staff members living on site, but the poachers were still able to get through.
White rhinoceroses were once on the brink of extinction, but now about 20,000 remain in the wild, despite the threat of poachers, The Independent reports.
Here's a look at Vince.
Incoming, 'Vince the rhino' 🦏 memes...— Boon (@jbooniee) March 7, 2017
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