It was a cruel twist of fate.
A poacher has been attacked and killed by the pride of lions he was hunting in a private game reserve in South Africa.
He was heard screaming for help as he was mauled to death and eaten by the big cats, with only his head remaining following the attack.
The incident occurred at the Ingwelala Private Nature Reserve in Hoedspruit, outside Phalaborwa.
A rifle was found nearby the mans remains, with it believed he was attempting to hunt the animals for their skeletons, skin and teeth before he was killed.
Image credit Getty
The identity of the poacher is still unknown as he was not carrying any documentation at the time of the attack. Limpopo police have now called in the Department of Home Affairs to assist their investigation.
Police Lieutenant-Colonel Moatshe Ngoepe said: “The process of identifying this body has already commenced and it might be made easier as his head was amongst the remains found at the scene.”
While an unnamed worker at a nearby reserved confirmed: “The head was still there but the lions had eaten most of the rest.
“A scream was heard and the lions were scattered by the sound of gunshots but it was too late to do anything for him. He was eaten.”
The news comes just months after another poacher, Luteni Muharukua, was charged and killed by the rhino he was attempting to hunt illegally in Etosha National Park, Namibia.