Posts Tagged With: fight for rhinos
Rangers go out on patrol for days at a time, in the wet, the heat, the cold to battle the unknown. But before they head out, they gather in the lecture/mess tent; to learn, to prepare, to eat, to share fellowship.
This is the scenario for our friends at NKWE, a wildlife security group training and employing rangers for nature reserves around Limpopo, and assisting SAPS in poaching investigations.
Recently their headquarters tent was torn in half by a storm, leaving them without a dry, shaded area for their gathering, a crucial part of their daily operation.
In addition to being the headquarters for their rangers, they also utilize the tent to assist the local community preparing food during community events; an important part of building relationships and trust with the locals.
NKWE prides itself on high standards of training, with a 12 month program in place in order for rangers to reach competency. The costs for such a lengthy and in-depth training is immense, with costs of R100,000 per recruit.
For this reason, they need our help.
The tent is $971 to replace. Your donations would be immensely helpful. Please go to PayPal on our page and donate what you can.
With the recent tragedy at Thula Thula Rhino Orphanage, the staff are doing their best to heal and pick up the pieces. There has been an outpouring of donations and support. Now we must be sure that justice is served. Please sign the following petition.
Even the outright horror of this recent attack hasn’t effected the South African governments intent to allow trade.
Although CITES is against it, evidence does not support it, and their so-called “legal” trade will only serve to fuel and mask the already illegal trade, Edna Molewa and the government are planning on going forward. Please sign this petition from the International Humane Society and voice your concern. This MUST not go forward!
Together, we must persevere in our pursuit of justice. Together, we must be the voice for the voiceless.
One of our greatest passions at Fight for Rhinos is in helping canine anti-poaching units. Dogs are a huge game-changer in the poaching war!
On average 2 rhinos and 96 elephants are slaughtered each day.
In the last ten years over 1,000 rangers have been killed.
Should there be a shoot-to-kill policy? Would it help? The controversy is widely debated.
But what do the rangers think?
I spoke to several rangers to get their thoughts.
One ranger said,
“Most of the poachers are poor locals surrounding the wildlife reserves and they see the reserves as their source of income. What is needed is to empower people near the reserves economically, pass on scheme of goats, dairy cows, sending poor children to school… they will become role models to the community and people will begin to appreciates the importance of conserving animals.
We can shoot ten poachers a day, suppose they are all men- surely their families will suffer and later become poachers as means of survival. We shoot at poachers when our lives and that of our friends are in danger but shooting down any poacher it’s not solution.”
Another who works in a large reserve said,
“I don’t think it will help because we normally look for deep information & investigations on a suspect caught that may lead to their middlemen, bosses etc.”
But overall most of them were in favor of the policy.
“Keeping them alive sometimes does not help because the source of poaching is dealing with big people, often from government offices. So it’s a bit risky for the rangers who arrest them.”
“This thing of arrest, it throws us backwards to winning this war of poaching. The more that are arrested, the more they are replaced by new poachers.”
“In courts things turn ugly for most of our rangers who killed poachers due to poachers kingpins paying prosecutors money to let their associates off the hook. (If it were a policy, the government would support rangers without the extensive interrogation)
“Yes, yes, yes! They should be shot. Because the rhinos are killed, but also the rangers. I think it is the only way to win this war.”
Earlier we requested your help in putting Chloe through her anti-poaching class. Her training is complete! She now helps protect the Kapama area near the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Center (HESC) and Kruger National Park.
The HESC current recruits are Bullet and Zee. The duo is the core of the Centre’s program; with Zee successfully done with initial training and Bullet going through puppy training.
The next step will be for them to undergo advanced training. The cost of the course is R20 000 per dog and another R20 000 for the trainer to attend and have her with the dogs at all times. That’s approximately $4,162 usd total.
We are committed to assisting with the successful care and training of the dogs; both for the protection of rhinos and the protection of the rangers. If you are able, please donate via PayPal.
With terrorism overshadowing our daily lives on a global level , it’s easy for the poaching epidemic to take a backseat on the list of top concerns. Yet, there is an undeniable link between the two.
For groups like Boko Haram, Al-Shabaab, Al-Qaeda, *up to 40% of the organizational funding for weapons, training, basic supplies and operational costs; come from ivory.
These groups are often the “middle men” along the chain of trade. Paying poachers less than $100 usd to do the dirty work, they gain approximately $2000/kilo in the sale of the ivory. Rhino horn is also a valued commodity for the terrorists, at a whopping $65000/kilo on the black market. An easy cash flow with little risk.
Stopping the actual poachers is meaningless, if others along the chain are not sought out. And in this case, stopping the middle men means ending the bloodshed for more than just rhinos and elephants.
*Investigation by Nir Kalron (Founder & CEO of Maisha Consulting) and Andrea Crosta (Executive Director & Co-Founder of the Elephant Action League)
The anti-poaching units work long hard hours in harsh conditions. They are tough, skilled, dependable and absolutely imperative to the survival of our remaining rhinos. And some of them aren’t even human.
Welcome Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centres newest recruit: Bullet.
Bullet is an 8 week old Malinois. He will already begin his training within the week! Anti-poaching dogs are HIGHLY effective in the war on poaching, but can cost up to $10,000 for one animal!
We have so far raised approximately $400 toward Chloe’s training, and are looking to further help Bullet and other members of the canine APU team at HESC.
Your help is needed and appreciated! DONATE via Paypal and please help spread the word! With your help, someday soon Bullet will be able to easily sniff out ammunition and gun powder just like Chloe!
We need to raise $1,152 to support Chloe’s canine ranger class at Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre.
With the purchase of a tee, you can help do that and SHOW your support by being a valuable part of our Rhino Security Team!
T-shirts are 100% cotton, available in 4 colors from S to XL, at a cost of just $19.99 usd.
Not purchasing a tee? Please consider a straight donation through our Paypal button on the top left of the page. Your support means a lot.