Eight critically endangered black rhinos died of suspected salt poisoning after being moved hundreds of miles across Kenya to a new national park.

The loss of the animals at a time when only around 5,000 remain on the planet was described as “a complete disaster” by conservationists.

Officials are now investigating whether any negligence by staff is behind the deaths at Tsavo East National Park, which is being supported by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

Tourism minister Najib Balala announced on Friday he had suspended further transfers of rhinos while independent experts are consulted.

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