Poachers have killed a female rhino to take a centimeter of her horn in a brutal attack.
The white rhino, Bella, had been 'de-horned' previously in an attempt to stop hunters from going for her, however, it didn't put them off and they killed the animal for the tiny amount of horn she had left, the Daily Mail reports.
Bella, who was mother to four, lived at the Kragga Kamma Game Park in Eastern Cape, South Africa.
Bella with Tank. Credit: Caters
Keepers from the Park have said her youngest, a male called Tank, is now orphaned and was trying to befriend another mum following his own mum's death.
Tank was also reportedly injured but keepers say his injuries are likely to have been from Bella pushing him away to safety, rather than from the poachers.
The Park's runner Ayesha Cantor wrote on Facebook: "It's just so unreal, for 1cm of horn - we cannot comprehend the waste of it all.
"We have always been acutely aware that these rhino are everyone's rhino, that we are merely their custodians, this has been evident in your outpouring of emotions.
"Thank you dear friends, we know that you are as devastated by this as we are."
In a post on the Kragga Kamma Game Park site, they said: "Going through our collection of photo's to put a tribute together, I'm reminded again of just what a magnificent rhino she was. An incredible productive and capable mom, there are hardly any images where she does not have a calf at her side.
"A more brutal and devastating day there could not have been, discovering Bella's body, notifying the authorities, fielding phone calls, (bad news sure does travel fast) and processing the crime scene as well as Bella's body to gather every possible shred of evidence.
"Seeing the intense attention to detail by the policing authorities, their unwavering dedication to uncovering every little snippet, nothing passes their eyes, working right up until the very late hours of the night brings home again just how 'not for rhino' our legal system is. All this work to catch a poacher only to have them given bail where they continue to go about their nefarious deeds."
Nine rhinos have been killed by poachers on the Eastern Cape this year alone.
The keepers regularly remove the horns of rhinos to try and discourage poachers from attacking the animals in a post explaining the practice, it says: "Even though dehorned rhino are still being poached around the country including the Eastern Cape, we feel that in keeping the 'reward' to a minimum, it would increase their chances of survival that having intact horns would certainly not."
Featured Image Credit: Caters