South Africa has the largest population of rhinos in the world and while large conservation efforts have been made to preserve populations, rhino poaching is still a major issue in the country. The number of of rhinos poached has increased steadily over the last couple of years with an estimated 1175 rhinos poached in 2015.
It is estimated that around 500 000 rhinos roamed Africa and Asia only 100 years ago. Excessive poaching in this short time frame has pushed the beautiful animal to near extinction. In fact, the Western black rhino was declared extinct in 2011 by the IUCN with the major cause given to poaching.
Rhino Poaching Solutions
A number of solutions have been proposed and/or are being implemented specifically for rhinos. Among those include:
- Chemically treated horns
- Micro-chip implants
- GPS technology fittings
While others are used specifically to deal with rhino poachers who enter into known rhino areas:
- Cellphone-based network censors
- Shot detectors
- Aerial-based detection censors placed on drones
- Night-vision equipment
Needless to say, while these measures are more effective, they are not cheap. Perhaps the biggest anti-poaching measure needed is active education of poaching and the myths associated with rhino horn in general. This needs to be aimed specifically at Asian cultures where negative cultural beliefs around rhino horn need to be tackled.
As mentioned previously the current crisis can be traced back to increased demand in Asian countries, particularly China and Vietnam. While money can make a difference in the fight to save the rhino we believe in spreading the word about endangered species and re-educating those with negative cultural beliefs which harm plant and animal life on the planet. Do you part to save this wonderful animal before it’s too late.