Karma Strikes Again: Trophy Hunter Killed by Elephant

Karma has really been a bitch to trophy hunters in Zimbabwe over the past couple of months. Early last montháScott Van Zyl, the owner of a South African trophy hunting operation, was eaten by the crocodiles he’d intended to kill.

On May 19, his friend Theunis Botha, the owner of another South African trophy-hunting company, was killed by an elephant at the Good Luck Farm, a canned hunting ranch near Zimbabwe’s Hwange National Park.

The group Botha was leading on a hunting safari unwittingly wandered into a breeding herd of elephants, the Telegraph reports.

When three elephant cows charged the hunters, Botha tried to shoot them. To stop him, a fourth elephant cow charged him from the side and lifted Botha with her trunk. One of the other trophy hunters fatally shot that elephant. She dropped Botha and collapsed on top of him, killing him.

Rest in peace, poor elephant.

Theunis Botha Big Game Safaris has been in business since the early 1980s. In 1991, Botha opened his first hunting ranch with his wife. At the time of his death, he owned private hunting ranches in Zimbabwe, Botswana, Mozambique and Namibia.

“A passionate and professional hunting outfitter operation focused on giving his clients a unique exiting [sic] African safari experience,” says the Theunis Botha Big Game Safaris and Hounds website.

“Passionate?” Botha was famous among other trophy hunters for “Monteria hunts,” which are especially despicable. This cowardly method of “hunting” ľ which involves no actual hunting whatsoever — puts dogs in danger by using them as bait to chase animals toward the losers lying in wait to shoot them.

In Europe, Monteria hunts traditionally involve deer and boar. Botha, however, gained his fame using this egregious method to kill lions and leopards.

Just like his buddy Van Zyl, Botha posted disturbing and graphic videos on YouTube of these kills. One video you really don’t want to watch shows hunters shooting elephants, crocodiles and other creatures and then, with big ol’ smiles on their faces, standing beside their kills. Botha is seen holding up huge elephant tusks and grinning beside a dead elephant.

While elephants apparently weren’t worth much more than their tusks to Botha, unlike him and his clients, these magnificent creatures have the capability to be compassionate.

“Research on elephants is full of examples of the animals apparently behaving empathetically — recognizing and responding to another elephant’s pain or problem,” notesáNational Geographic. “Often, they even make heroic efforts to assist one another.”

That’s exactly what that elephant cow was doing when she was killed trying to saving the lives of others in her herd. At least her death wasn’t completely in vain. She permanently saved her herd and other wildlife from someone who profited and took pleasure fromákilling innocent animals.

It’s highly unlikely, but wouldn’t it be great if, spooked by the deaths of Van Zyl and Botha, other trophy hunters decide not to take any chances and take up a humane hobby instead? Karma can actually be a very beautiful thing.

Photo credit: YouTube


Ann W
Ann Wyesterday

YAY about Botha. RIP brave elephant who sacrificed herself to save her friends.

One Heart i
One Heart i5 days ago


Kelsey S
Kelsey S7 days ago

Thanks for sharing

Elaine W
Elaine W8 days ago


Nicole Heindryckx
Nicole H9 days ago

The death of Van Zyl and Botha certainly will not stop other trophy hunters from maintaining their "hobby". I wish that there were every day such "nice" accidents. Then, may be, these brainless murderers would stop killing wildlife. I know that in South Africa there are lion breeding "mills" where young lions are taken away as soon as possible from their moms, so she is getting pregnant much sooner. The little ones are being taken care of / raised by local people, and when they are sufficiently big, they are released in a big park, from which they can not escape. They just have enough food not to starve, and trophy hunters are allowed to go into these parks to shoot "their" lion. They are not afraid of people, as they spent their whole live with them. So, they do NOT attack, or flee !! Apparently there are over 800 lions each year who are being killed that way !!! Totally insane, cruel, disgusting, ... words fail me to express my feelings. When their heads and hides are removed, their bodies serve as meals for their sisters and brothers (= captured lions). People are such NICE, EMPATHIC and COMPASSIONATE "creatures"... Sometimes I wonder if I cld get angry enough to shoot one of them. Regretfully, the answer is NO !

Barbara V
Barbara V12 days ago

I'm glad the filthy dirt bag got his just due. I wish the same for others like him.

Barbara V
Barbara V12 days ago

I'm glad the filthy dirt bag got his just due. I wish the same for others like him.

Larry McDaniel
Larry McDaniel18 days ago

Serves him right! Thank you

Lorraine A

Very good news. Maybe he be in a place where the animals can terrorize him for all of eternity.

carol s
carol smith21 days ago

Great, thankyouk