What is poaching?
Poaching is the illegal hunting and killing of wildlife. The main motive for poaching is typically the profit. Poachers can make large sums of money for animal parts such as elephant ivory tusks, rhino horns, and tiger skin, among many others.
So, if you haven’t been keeping up with recent news, the amount of South African rhinos killed by poachers is at an annual record. This has caused concern for the rhino species’ fate. If the poaching continues at this pace, rhinos could become extinct within a decade. South Africa is home to over 80% of the rhino population in Africa. There is an estimated population of 22,000. Every year, hundreds of rhinos in South Africa are killed for their horns. Poachers killed 704 rhinos by the end of this September. Their horns sell for prices higher than gold in the black market. In Asia, the rhino horn is used and unfortunately for the rhinos, believed to work as a medical cure and remedy for cancer, other diseases, hangovers and devil possession. Many of the poachers in South Africa come from Mozambique, which borders Kruger National Park. This park is where most of the killings occur. Park rangers are training as soldiers to go up against the poachers. Campaigners around the world are trying to shut down illegal exports to places such as Vietnam, China and Thailand — all dominant consumers.
What can you do to help?
1. Do not buy rhino horn products. (carvings, art, medicine, etc.)
3. Spread the word. Share information and facts with friends and family through Facebook, Twitter, or any other social media you can think of.
Check out the link below to see some of the recorded locations of rhino poaching in South Africa in 2012.
View Rhino Poaching in South Africa in a full screen map