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Monday, 13 November 2017   /   published in Poaching, Rangers, Rhinos

Nine Rhinos Killed By Poachers In Less Than Two Months At Pilanesberg National Park

Pilanesberg National Park in South Africa deals with the poaching problem  on a daily basis.

The park, has lost a staggering total of nine rhinos in eight weeks.

Amongst the rhinos, an old carcass was found, which would have been the 10th rhino carcass in Pilanesberg this year.

 

Rhinos are poached for their horns. Countries like China and Vietnam believe it is an important ingredient for some medicines.

Rhinos  could become extinct in 10 years (or less) if poaching continues at national parks like Pilanesberg.

Perry Dell, Marketing and PR Manager from Pilanesberg Wildlife Trust: “For the year, we have lost 16 plus three foetuses – that we are aware of.

In 2012, 668 rhinos were poached in South Africa. In January 2013, the number rose to 946. That is poaching at a rate of two per day.

The current rate is nearly three rhinos being killed every day; that’s 1,054 rhinos last year.

“We can only advise on carcasses found,” said Dell. “The terrain is not open or flat. Visibility even from the air is challenging in some parts of the park.”

In September, a rhino and her calf fell victims to the scourge of poaching in the national park.

In October, one older carcass and two freshly poached rhinos were found ‘murdered’ at the park but the poachers got away, leaving with a single horn from the pair.

Another incident occurred in November, as another pregnant rhino and her calf were shot and killed by poachers.

This time, horns were still intact as the ‘murderers’ fled the scene shortly after.

In the last decade, more than 7,245 African rhinos have been lost to poaching, according to Save the Rhino. It is the fifth most profitable illicit trade, ranking behind drug and weapons trading.

When asked how to prevent the act of poaching in the future, Dell said: “Creating awareness that there is no value in rhino horn except for the rhino.

“The demand is so high, and will increase if made available for legal trade. More, and easier, accessibility means more users.

“It would be great if people put their money where their mouth is, and support the anti-poaching effort with whatever resources they have.