Rhino was killed with AK 47 during William and Kate’s visit

, 6:00 PM IST

In yet another blow to conservation efforts, poachers killed a male rhino with AK 47 rifle, 30 kms away from the stay of this royal couple, William and Kate, at Kaziranga National Park on Wednesday. The incident took place while the royal couple was spending night at a lodge near the park.

A male adult rhino was killed and its horn taken away by armed poachers, said KNP Divisional Forest Officer Subhashis Das adding, “88 empty cases of AK-47 cartridges were found from the spot.”

During their visit, Prince William and Princess Kate talked to villagers and forest officials about anti-poaching measures. Prince William enquired about the challenges officials face in their efforts to keep the animals safe from poachers and also asked if they required superior weapons. The Kaziranga park is a UNESCO world heritage site and home to the world’s biggest population of the one horned rhino – about 2,400 at last count. Their horns are reportedly smuggled for millions of dollars.