Registering to Rescue our RhinosIn 2008, 83 rhinos were poached in South Africa alone.
In 2009, the number went up to 122.
In 2010, 333 and in 2011, 448.
In 2012, 668 rhinos were poached, a 49% increase from the previous year.
By February 2013, the number of rhinos poached meant that we were losing two a day.
As rhino poaching continues to escalate, new methods of dealing with the scourge are essential for the survival of a species that has walked the earth long before us humans.
One of those taking up the challenge to protect our rhinos is the SAB Boucher Conservation.
SAB Boucher Conservation is a non-profit organisation powered by SAB and cricket legend, Mark Boucher, and together they have launched the “Rhino in Safe Hands campaign”.
The campaign focuses its time, energy, and money on stopping rhino poaching through DNA management and analysis.
“I know that this isn't a situation that is conducive to easy solutions, but one thing I am sure of we need a reliable, effective management system that records the exact state of the rhino population now and tracks key trends into the future,” said Mark in an interview on http://www.insafehands.co.za, “We have to give the authorities the information to guide their decision-making on a daily basis”.
94.5 Kfm’s Breakfast Show host, Ryan O’Connor answered Mark’s call for individuals to take up the fight against poaching.
Early on Tuesday morning, Ryan took time away from the Western Cape’s most popular breakfast show to help register and tag our rhino at the Pilansberg National Park.
Ryan and Rhino in Safe Hands braved the ice-cold morning weather to help save the incredible animals.
Ryan participated in rhino capture, where the animals are notched, horns measured and microchips inserted into the horns for tracking.
Dust from the horns is then transferred into a vial for DNA profiling.
Having all of South Africa’s rhinos on the system will assist in forensic prosecutions of rhino poachers and is aimed at deterring them from poaching.
“Tagging rhino with Rhino in Safe Hands as we do our bit to save these beautiful creatures was an unbelievable experience, one of the most humbling ever,” said Ryan.
The likes of Ryan and Mark are needed in the fight against the poaching of our rhino but it is the work of each and every individual to protect and act for an incredible creature who, without, would be speechless.
In the words of Mark Boucher, let us “work together for the day where illegal poachers will be the losers and the rhino the winner”.
To find out how you can help protect our rhinos, visit http://www.insafehands.co.za/#&panel1-1