Despite increasing numbers in scattered populations, it is still a tough fight to save this mega-herbivore. The Nairobi National Park is famed for being the only wilderness park in the world bordering a capital city that can boast free ranging lions as neighbours. Yet few know that the national park is also a vital sanctuary to conserve one of the most endangered mega-herbivores on the planet — the black rhino and the white rhino.
Cape Town — South African soldiers, posted on the SA-Mozambican border to conduct border security patrols, seized 22 poachers and confiscated 19 hunting rifles and AK-47s between April last year and March this year.
The Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu, briefing media before her Budget Vote in Parliament on Thursday, said these poachers had been referred to the Hawks for further investigation.
Pretoria — The number of rhinos poached in South Africa since the beginning of the year has risen to 210, the Department of Environmental Affairs said.
Of the total number, the Kruger National Park has lost a "disturbing" total of 127 rhinos since January 2012. "Government views the poaching of this national treasure in a very serious light and continues to prioritise our fight against this crime through coordinated, joint efforts," said the department.
SOUTH Africa is considering whether to approach the international community with a proposal to trade in rhino horn, Environment Minister Edna Molewa told MPs on Wednesday. Opening debate in the National Assembly on her department's budget, she said this included engaging "major role players, including international and regional partners (and) potential consumer states".
Reports that the governments of Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, Namibia and Angola agreed to sell rhino horn powder in clinics and pharmacies are "malicious and false," says Dr Jeff Ramsay, Botswana's chief of government communication. Ramsay says there has never been any discussion or agreement between the governments to sell rhino horn powder in clinics and pharmacies.
Following the killing and de-horning of the newly imported Rhinocerous in Serengeti, authorities have deployed aircrafts to patrol the vast park.
Speaking in Serengeti recently the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Ezekiel Maige explained that aerial patrolling was among the various effort by the government to reinforce security in Serengeti.
For the second time in the history of the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, we face the difficult task of sharing some devastating news with you. On Saturday, October 30th, in the early hours before dawn, a group of poachers came onto the Conservancy and killed one of our female black rhinos. Her horns were taken and the poachers managed to escape.
On Friday, March 5th, Tana, the nine year old black rhino who had been shot and injured by armed poachers on December 26, 2009, finally gave up her fight for life and died. Tana had been wounded in the shoulder and a second black rhino, Ntoiye, was fatally shot in that same poaching incident on the Lewa Wildlife Conservancy. This is Lewa's first ever rhino loss to poachers and is a sad and devastating event for all of us.
Poachers struck at the Krugersdorp Game Reserve for the second time in the past three months. Illegal hunters killed two white rhino on Friday, which brings the number of deaths at the hands of poachers at the reserve to three in as many months. In the latest attack, poachers cut the horns from two rhino. Both animals bled to death, and police are investigating the possibility that the same poachers were behind both incidents.