This was a tough year for rhinos. No doubt about it. The poachings have amounted to over 1100 deaths in 2014. Outrage, grief and frustration weigh on the hearts of all of us, but there is no room for doubt or defeat. For behind the headlines of “another rhino poached”, lie seeds of hope and strength.
*Awareness groups in Vietnam, like ENV (Education for Nature Vietnam), WildAct and WildAid have launched campaigns to raise awareness and change attitudes in Vietnam about rhino horn use.
*The Javan rhino population has increased.
*The US (the second largest ivory market in the world) announced a ban on commercial ivory.
*Rhinos Without Borders and And Beyond have aided in the translocation of rhinos into safer, intensive protection zones.
*Interpol is getting involved with seeking out the capture of rhino poachers, recognizing the importance of stopping poaching on a global, criminal level.
*Skukuza has increased the amount of poaching case prosecutions.
*Namibia has devoted a specialist military army to battle poaching in 2015
*The first ever World Youth Rhino Summit was convened, educating and empowering youth throughout multiple countries to be the future leaders in conservation efforts for rhinos.
*Protected areas in Sumatra have not seen any poaching incidents since 2006.
*There have been multiple arrests of poaching kingpins and syndicates; from a kingpin in Tanzania to Kwazu-natal to a syndicate in Czech-Republic.
*The death of Karanja, a 44-year-old black rhino with an intact horn, in the Masai Mara was of natural causes, not poaching.
*Kenya claims a 50% reduction in rhino poaching.
*The first birth of a new rhino at Imire in Zimbabwe, since their 2007 poaching tragedy
With combined efforts, Fight for Rhinos is gearing up for 2015 to be a year of change. Together with Helping Rhinos, RPA, WildAct and you we can make a difference. “Endelea Kupigana” (Keep fighting)!