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To legalise or not to legalise?... (A version of this article was originally published in The Horn, autumn 2011. Author: Lucy Boddham-Whetham, former Deputy Director at Save the Rhino) In theory, a heavily controlled legalised trade in rhino horn could help meet the Asian demand for rhino horn and generate much-needed funds for conservation. In reality, there are many concerns about the viability of a legal trade its implications. I wanted to take a closer look at the debate. Those in favour of a legal trade argue that...
PHASA SETS VALUE OF RHINO LOST TO POACHINGAT OVER A BILLION RAND... November 2013 – The economic cost of rhino poached in South Africa between 2008 and 2013 is around R1.1 billion, says the Professional Hunting Association of South Africa (PHASA). Speaking at the first ever Biodiversity Economy Indaba taking place in Polokwane, PHASA chief executive Adri Kitshoff says that this figure was based exclusively on the average species fee for rhino over the five year period and therefore the total economic loss to the country, had these rhinos been hunted legally,...
Fury as rhino-hunting permit sold...   Reuters | 13 January, 2014 00:02 A permit to hunt a black rhino in Namibia was auctioned for $350000 in Dallas, in the US, at the weekend.File photo Image by: Vassil/ Wikipedia. A permit to hunt a black rhino in Namibia was auctioned for $350000 in Dallas, in the US, at the weekend. The proceeds of the sale will be used to protect the endangered animals, despite protests from animal rights groups that saw the sale as immoral pseudo-conservation. The...
South African rhino poaching deaths nears 1,000...   South Africa  has lost nearly 1,000 rhinos this year in a poaching surge to feed the black-market demand for their horns, according to the environment ministry. “The total number of rhino poached in South Africa since January 2013 has increased to 946,” the ministry said in a statement. Asian demand for rhino horn – prized as a status symbol and wrongly thought to possess medicinal properties – has fueled an ever more intense onslaught on the animals. In 2007...
Rhino poacher sentenced to 6 years... JOHANNESBURG – South African National Parks (SANParks) says it hopes the sentencing of a rhino poacher to six years behind bars in Limpopo will send a strong message to other rhino killers. Musa Simango and two of his accomplices were cornered by a ranger in the Kruger National Park in October. One of the suspects was killed in a shootout while another managed to escape. On Tuesday, the 19-year-old Mozambican national was found guilty of attempted rhino poaching, unlawful possession of ammunition and...

A blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year to all the Rhino Buddies out there!...

  A blessed Christmas and a Happy new year to all the Rhino Buddies out there! Thank you Dr. Jack Swanepoel for this picture from the & Beyond collection. Posted from WordPress for Black...

Rhino Poachers In South Africa Set Terrible New Record...

Poachers in South Africa reached a milestone in 2013 when they killed more than 1,000 rhinos for their horns. The harrowing benchmark is a new record for poaching in the African nation. It represents more than a 50 percent increase from the year before, Reuters reports. South Africa is home to the majority of the world’s rhino population, so mass killings of this volume is a dire warning for conservationists, the outlet notes. The black rhino is considered “critically endangered” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), while the white rhino is classified as “near threatened.” Both subspecies live in South Africa. The drastic rise in rhino deaths has been tied to skyrocketing demand in Asia for the creatures’ horns. Prized for its status as well as its alleged medicinal value, ground up rhino horn is sold as a cure for everything from cancer to diabetes at prices up to $100,000 per kilogram. Vietnam has proved to have a particularly insatiable demand for the powder, which was reportedly linked to the recovery of a cancer-stricken official, Smithsonian magazine notes. In an effort to stop poachers, South Africa has turned its park service rangers into soldiers and has even deployed members of the armed forces to the hard-hit rhino habitat of Kruger National Park, the Telegraph reports. Although more than 300 suspected poachers were arrested last year, the criminal operations use sophisticated tactics and resources to elude law...

Eleven poachers killed in Kruger

Johannesburg – Eleven rhino poachers have been killed in the Kruger National Park (KNP) since the beginning of the year, SA National Parks (SANParks) said on Tuesday. Seven of them were killed on Friday and Saturday, SANParks spokesman Reynold Thakhuli said in a statement. Four hunting rifles, ammunition, poaching equipment and a pair of horns were seized. The poachers were killed by park rangers and members of the SA National Defence Force, in an attempt to curb rhino poaching in the park, Thakhuli said. “They (poachers) operate in groups of four to six and are aggressive and engage and shoot at the rangers on sight, creating a daily life-threatening situation.” Thakhuli said two other poachers were arrested and eight firearms were seized in January. “Up to 15 heavily armed groups operate in the KNP at any given time, especially during the full moon period,” he said. Forty rhino have been killed in the KNP in the past year. “This has brought more resolve from the Rangers’ Corps to double their efforts to keep the species alive,” he said. Ranger commander Maj-Gen Johan Jooste said he was optimistic about the park’s long term poaching prevention strategy. He said that poaching incidents in the park had decreased from 72.6 percent in 2012 to 42.6 percent in 2013, and that 123 people were arrested in connection with poaching activities in 2013. “It is now up to the prosecuting teams, investigators and the (SA Police Service) to conclude what we have started,” Jooste said. Sapa     A file photo of a black rhinoceros and her calf walk in Tanzania’s Serengeti park....

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