Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
Over the years, Dr Koos Vorster and his wife Ita have welcomed several duikers (small buck) into their home—serving as a sanctuary for these gentle creatures.
However, the couple’s love for the eight duiker they raised has turned into a raw wound due to poachers’ violent deeds.
Dr Vorster recounts that their tiny Pekenise Dog began barking around 1.30 a.m. on Saturday, November 20, 2021. “I peeked out the window but couldn’t find anything. Then I heard dogs running through our yard, and our duiker screamed in pain as they were bitten.”
Dr Vorster sprang into action, freeing his three larger dogs and rushing after them. Thanks to his prompt response, Dr Vorster was able to chase the hunting dogs off his property, with their owners disappearing into the night.
Regrettably, the damage had already been done. During the raid, four duikers living on Dr Vorster’s land were killed, and one of the carcasses was stolen.
Dr Vorster is concerned about the disappearance of two of his little duiker. He is unsure if they escaped via a hole in his perimeter fence created by the poachers. Or whether they were killed and their remains removed.
Reflecting on the incident, Dr Vorster emphasises, “This is the most traumatic experience in my life. I have been fostering these duiker for years. As an honorary member of Ezemvelo Wildlife, this was one of my responsibilities.” Adding to the heartbreak, Dr Vorster notes that he has kept the duiker since they were infants. Further stating that he and his wife even bottle-fed them years back.
After disposing of the carcasses riddled in bites and absorbing the heinous events endured, Dr Vorster and his wife are now left with their last two duikers.
The question now remains, what is being done to apprehend and deal with illegal poaching in suburban neighbourhoods and how much of a concern is this?
What are your opinions on the subject? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.