Prince Harry hits beach to meet ex street kids on South Africa tour

After meeting the Sharks rugby team and posing with a cuddly toy of a Great White, Prince Harry got up close to another set of sharp teeth – possessed by an anti-poaching dog called Killer.

The 31-year-old touched down in Kruger National Park on the second day of his whirlwind tour of South Africa where he met the six-year-old Belgian Malinois, the nation’s most successful poacher catcher who has caught more than 115 hunters during his working life.

After touring the centre at the park, where staff co-ordinate their operational and intelligence response to poaching, the royal saw Killer and his handler but kept his distance after the canine, who was described as calm natured, was reported to have bitten a member of the British High Commission on the arm earlier today.

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Don't get too close Harry! The prince keeps a respectful distance from tracker dog called Killer, who bit a member of the British High Commission staff shortly after Harry arrived at Kruger National Park

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Don’t get too close Harry! The prince keeps a respectful distance from tracker dog called Killer, who bit a member of the British High Commission staff shortly after Harry arrived at Kruger National Park

Butter wouldn't melt! Killer looks in relaxed mood despite taking a nibble on a man's arm

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Butter wouldn’t melt! Killer looks in relaxed mood despite taking a nibble on a man’s arm

Prince Harry is snapped wearing a red ribbon for World AIDS Day as he visits Mission Area Joint Operations Centre in Skukuza

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Prince Harry is visiting South Africa as part of a Royal Tour that has included the Opening of a new Charity Centre for children in Lesotho (Sentebale's Mamohato Children's Centre) and includes stops in Durban, Cape Town, Kruger National Park and Johannesburg.

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Prince Harry is snapped wearing a red ribbon for World AIDS Day as he visits Mission Area Joint Operations Centre in Skukuza. Prince Harry is visiting South Africa as part of a Royal Tour that has included the Opening of a new Charity Centre for children in Lesotho, with stops in Durban, Cape Town, Kruger National Park and Johannesburg

Prince Harry visits the Mission Area Joint Operations Centre (MAJOC) which fights rhino poaching In Kruger National Park Harry

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Prince Harry visits the Mission Area Joint Operations Centre (MAJOC) which fights rhino poaching In Kruger National Park Harry

Harry enquired about the health of the rhino population during his visit to Kruger National Park

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Harry enquired about the health of the rhino population during his visit to Kruger National Park

Harry greets Charmaine Swart who showed the prince a shark tattoo on her ankle

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Harry greets Charmaine Swart who showed the prince a shark tattoo on her ankle

That'll help her feel better: Harry offers a hug to Charmaine Swart who he recognised after working as a conservation volunteer during the summer

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That’ll help her feel better: Harry offers a hug to Charmaine Swart who he recognised after working as a conservation volunteer during the summer

Overexcited by the cameras and fuss, the dog bit the member of staff when he went to pet him.

The member of staff was treated at the scene and has since been given precautionary jabs for diseases such as tetanus and rabies. Although the animal drew blood, he is said to have recovered well.

The prince had spent 10 days at the park during the summer when he worked as a conservation volunteer in Africa, and as he left he saw Charmaine Swart, member of staff he recognised and gave her a hug before she raised her leg to show him a shark tattoo on her calf.

The visit came after Harry met the Sharks rugby team and enjoying a surf lesson with former street children at the beach. 

At Kruger, he went straight into a briefing at the Missions Area Joint Operations Service.

However, the meeting, which saw Harry updated on the work being done to protect the two million hectare reserve and its 8,000 or 9,000 strong rhino population, was somewhat overshadowed by the incident afterwards involving one of the Park’s tracker dogs.

But the visit was a far cry from the reception he got at Addington Beach earlier, where crowds of teenage girls swarmed around the single royal calling for a wave or a smile.

Instead he participated in the discussion about the health of the rhino population in the two million hectare reserve. 

Prince Harry was greeted by dozens of excited fans as he hit the beach in Durban today. The single royal's unexpected presence on the waterfront saw crowds of teenage girls swarming around him calling for a wave or a smile

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Prince Harry was greeted by dozens of excited fans as he hit the beach in Durban today. The single royal’s unexpected presence on the waterfront saw crowds of teenage girls swarming around him calling for a wave or a smile

Prince Harry, wearing shades and sporting ruffled hair, strikes a pose with youths from the Surfers Not Street Children project on Addington Beach in Durban on the latest pit-stop on his four-day South African tour

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Prince Harry, wearing shades and sporting ruffled hair, strikes a pose with youths from the Surfers Not Street Children project on Addington Beach in Durban on the latest pit-stop on his four-day South African tour

Dressed for the beach: Harry wore chinos and navy strides for his coastal visit

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Harry met 12 young surfers from the Surfers Not Street Children while on his visit to the Durban coast

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Hanging out: In beach-ready clothes, Harry met 12 young surfers from the Surfers Not Street Children while on his visit to the Durban coast

It's been a fun day so far: After an early morning stop at the city's Shark Tank rugby ground, Harry, 31, made his way to nearby Addington Beach to soak up some sun and chat with ex-street children

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It’s been a fun day so far: After an early morning stop at the city’s Shark Tank rugby ground, Harry, 31, made his way to nearby Addington Beach to soak up some sun and chat with ex-street children

Making new friends: A young surfer gives Harry the thumbs' up as the royal strides across Addington Beach

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Making new friends: A young surfer gives Harry the thumbs’ up as the royal strides across Addington Beach

The prince, who had visited the park privately over the summer, asked whether they were still losing around two rhino a day and was told they were. So far this year poachers have killed 686 rhino.

The bearded prince, 31, was at the picturesque Durban Beach with 12 young men from the Surfers Not Street Children project.

The charity helps impoverished teenagers who have been sleeping rough to become independent living adults by harnessing their love for the surf. 

The prince wasn’t persuaded to hit the waves himself – although it is suspected he would have loved to – but watched from the sand wearing jeans, a loose white shirt and desert boots.

As he watched the boys take to the water, crowds of mainly young women gathered, snapping selfies and calling out his name, while some even chased him back up the sand as he walked back to his convoy.

Earlier Harry spoke to the boys who have been saved by the charity from a life of sleeping rough at the residential home they now share, with the help of the project’s founder, Tom Hewitt.

Decorated with ocean murals, it is a nurturing environment where they are given support to help them heal from the trauma of their past as well as emotional support and mentoring, counselling, life-skills – such as cooking – basic literacy and education, and sexual health awareness.

The royal action man chatted happily about Polzeath Beach in Cornwall where he and one of the young men he met had both taken to the waves. 

Youngsters from the project look keen to get going as they run towards the surf followed by Harry and Surfers Not Street Children founder Tom Hewitt

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Youngsters from the project look keen to get going as they run towards the surf followed by Harry and Surfers Not Street Children founder Tom Hewitt

Harry started the visit with his shirt loosely tucked in but the breezy Durban weather soon saw him looking a little more casual...

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Harry started the visit with his shirt loosely tucked in but the breezy Durban weather soon saw him looking a little more casual…

Beach buddies: Tom Hewitt, founder of the project, and Harry, surround themselves with the surfers for a series of group photos

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Beach buddies: Tom Hewitt, founder of the project, and Harry, surround themselves with the surfers for a series of group photos

Crowds of young fans gathered on the beach to catch a glimpse of Harry. The prince, back in his linen shirt and navy chinos after wearing the Sharks rugby kit earlier today, was happy to pose for pictures

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Crowds of young fans gathered on the beach to catch a glimpse of Harry. The prince, back in his linen shirt and navy chinos after wearing the Sharks rugby kit earlier today, was happy to pose for pictures

Cooling off at the coast: Harry took a stroll alongside the project founder Tom Hewitt to learn more about the South African surfing initiative

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Cooling off at the coast: Harry took a stroll alongside the project founder Tom Hewitt to learn more about the South African surfing initiative

Harry is an occasional surfer – apparently he and his brother, Prince William, went on his stag weekend – and was fascinated to learn about their stories.

The prince also discussed how dangerous it was surfing in South Africa given the large shark population and told a volunteer from the US that Californian surf ‘was the best’.

Andile Zulu was aged just six and sleeping on the streets when he was ‘saved’ by the project.

Now aged 23 and working in a surf shop, he said: ‘My father died of cancer and my mum died giving birth to me. I had a very difficult and destructive family background. I was living with my grandmother but she couldn’t really cope so I took myself out on the streets.

‘At night I would sleep wherever I could but there were always people who want to exploit you. During the day I would hang around the beach looking at the surfers. I have always loved the sea.

‘I met Tom and told him I needed a place to stay. I didn’t like the life I was being drawn into, the drugs, the exploitation. I didn’t want to live like that, I wanted to make something of myself, to go places.’

Harry looks on as young surfers offer a beachside lesson on how to master the art of surfing

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Harry looks on as young surfers offer a beachside lesson on how to master the art of surfing

The prince heard how the project's residential home in Durban has helped take children off the streets of Durban and offer them a lifeline

The prince heard how the project’s residential home in Durban has helped take children off the streets of Durban and offer them a lifeline

And now the lesson's over, it's time for a selfie, the youngsters gather to pose for pictures with Harry

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