Pretoria, Jul 19 (IANS): A total of 281 rhinos have been poached in South Africa this year, and 176 people arrested for the killings, state-run news agency SA News reported.
According to the Department of Environmental Affairs, the Kruger National Park - with an area of over 19,000 square km, has lost 164 rhinos to poaching.
The provinces of Limpopo, North West, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal accounted for 110 of the total rhinos poached since the beginning of this year.
The arrested criminals include 153 poachers, 10 receivers, six buyers and seven exporters, the department said.
The South African government has put out an emergency phoe number and urged people to report incidents of poaching or tip-offs that could lead to arrests and prevention of killings.