msnbc.com
updated 11/3/2010 4:20:13 PM ET 2010-11-03T20:20:13

A tourist showering at a popular fishing camp in a remote area of Zimbabwe was attacked and killed by a pride of lions, local media reported Wednesday.

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Pete Evershed, who was vacationing from the capital Harare, was taking an outdoor shower just before dark Tuesday when up to five lions attacked.

After others at the camp heard screams, he was found in the shower with serious neck wounds and later died from loss of blood.

Some locals attributed the attack to tour operators who have started using meat to lure lions so that tourists can get a close-up look.

But a conservation group said lions are having to compete with humans for food, and that eight villagers were killed in similar attacks earlier this year.

"If they've got no food, they're going to look for other ways of feeding the pride," Johnny Rodrigues, head of the Zimbabwean Conservation Task Force, told the German news agency DPA.

Antelopes, a favorite lion food, are regularly hunted by locals for their own consumption.

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Rodrigues also blamed the proliferation of fishing camps along the Zambezi River for adding to the conflict between humans and the lions.

A spokeswoman for Mana Pools National Park, where the attack happened, said Evershed's wife appealed for the lions not to be killed.

"A request has been sent to the authority by the deceased’s widow for clemency for the lions, an issue still under consideration," she said.

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