Slaughter Leaves Javan Rhino Extinct in Vietnam

Posted October 25th, 2011 at 12:40 am (UTC-5)
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International wildlife groups say the critically endangered Javan rhinoceros has been wiped out in Vietnam after the last surviving rhino was found dead with its horn hacked off.

In a report Tuesday, the WWF blamed the extinction on ineffective protection of the creatures in Cat Tien National Park, where a small population of the beasts was discovered in 1988.

The only remaining population of Javan rhinos is in Indonesia, where between 40 and 60 animals exist in a small national park.

Wildlife groups say the animal in Vietnam was likely killed by poachers for its horn. There is a huge demand for rhinoceros horn in several Asian countries, where it is used in traditional medicine.

WWF said other species nearing extinction in Vietnam include the tiger, Asian elephant and Siamese crocodile.