A story claiming that an African billionaire slaughtered 20 elephants for his birthday is found to have been a hoax.
A story claiming that an African billionaire slaughtered 20 elephants for his birthday is found to have been a hoax.Reuters

A report claiming that the son of an African billionaire slaughtered 20 elephants during his $200 million birthday party is found to have been a hoax.

The fake news was started by a World News Daily report, which is a 'satirical' website.

The report stated that African billionaire and oil tycoon Mamalouke Abamknamole Babawatke organised a $200 million party for his 20-year old son-Jalabnanke Babawatke, "where it seems everything was permitted."

The hoax then went on to claim that from "dawn to dusk, the 20,000 guests were treated to the worlds greatest DJ's such as Tiestö, Armin Van Buren and David Guetta, the event being presented by no less than Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, personal friends of his father".

And it was during the party that the 'birthday boy' reportedly decided to take a ride on his birthday gift - a Tiger Attack helicopter - given to him by his father.

Once in the skies, the young billionaire reportedly told his pilot that he wanted to shoot some elephants, and hence was flown to Boni National Reserve situated in the North Eastern Province of Kenya, only a few miles from his birthday party.

"After 45 minutes, no less than 20 elephants had been slaughtered in sheer amusement by the birthday boy and two of his guests, creating an international malaise between the two countries (Kenya and Somalia) whose relationship is already tense and the Babawatke empire, who is a major player in both countries' economies," the hoax reported.

The story however is a complete lie and so are the pictures used in the article. The first image used in the report which shows a man on a helicopter holding a rifle while hovering over an elephant is in fact a picture of Kenyan Wildlife Services (KWS) and the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in the process of tagging elephants with GPS tracking devices in order to prevent poaching. The rifle being used is actually shooting tranquilizer darts.

The image was featured in the "Animal Photo of the Week" section of The Telegraph.

Similarly, another image used in the story, where it shows several dead elephants is taken from the 2013 incident where 12 elephants were slain at the Tsavo East National Park in Kenya. An NBC report on the story published in 2013 had called the incident "the bloodiest attack by poachers in Kenyan history".

The hoax story on the elephant slaughter resulted in an angry reaction from many and was also shared widely on social media. The story however is fake as even the 'Disclaimer' on the website states that: "All news articles contained within worldnewsdailyreport.com are fiction, and presumably fake news.