Tuesday, April 17, 2018

UK's Trade in Illegal Rhino Horn

Eight poachers attacked a Rhino orphanage at Thula Thula using a machete on two 18 month old orphans whose mothers had already been slaughtered for their horn. Impi was orphaned at two months old; he laid beside his mother's butchered carcass for six days, eating mud, until rescuers found him close to death.  More than 700 Rhinos were slaughtered in South Africa in 2016.  According to the Zoological Society, a Rhino is hacked to death every 11 hours. Traffickers from the UK are trading in Rhino horn, buying online from middle-men who operate from South Africa, Egypt, Ethiopia and Equatorial Guinea and who sell it for £20,000 per lb. 

In March 2017, a very rare and valuable White Rhino was slaughtered for its horn in a zoo on the outskirts of Paris. This is the first attack on a Rhino in a private zoo. 

In South Africa the full total Rhino population (2017 figures) is approximately 20,000. Over the past 12 months, 1,054 have been viciously slaughtered for their horn. 

The number of Rhinos slaughtered in 2007 was 13; 
In 2008 the number was 83;
In 2011, 448 Rhinos were slaughtered and the number has rapidly risen each year. 
By 2015, a tipping point was reached where more were dying than being born - a recipe for certain extinction. The horn is used by the Chinese and Vietnamese for herbal medicine and in the Middle East, it is used to make dagger handles. The Yemen and Oman are thought to be the biggest users. Loss of habitat also contributes to their declining numbers. What you can do? Avoid buying wild animal products and boycott those who do! 

The White Rhino

Hunting is on the rise in South Africa. This vicious cruelty involves darting the animal with sedatives and removing the horn with a chain saw, usually leaving it to bleed to death.  

Black Rhino
The Black Rhino population is significantly smaller than the its White cousin. There are approximately 4,880 Black Rhino left in the wild.

Sumatran Rhino

The Sumatran Rhino lives in dense rain forest.  It can be found in North East India, Thailand, Malaysia, Borneo and Sumatra and is the hairiest of all the five Rhino species and this is believed to be due to it being the closest surviving animal to the Wooly Rhinoceros which lived in the ice-ages.

Greater One Horned Rhino

Also known as the Indian Rhino, the Greater One-horned Rhino occurs at the foothills of the Himalayas in Nepal and India. The Greater One-horned Rhino's most distinctive feature is its 'armour plating', huge folds of heavy leather skin. 

Javan Rhino

This is the most endangered. About 50 animals live in dense tropical rain forest in the Ujung Kulon National Park in Indonesia. 

Most die of their horrific wounds. If they are found in time, some can be saved and nursed back to health.

With thanks to Helping Rhinos: http://www.helpingrhinos.org

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