Rhino Baby Born, Milestone Number Reached at 100…good news or sad news?
Finally 100 rhinos are now in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy. With poaching on the rise again, especially for rhino horns, numbers like 100 are a big deal. The conservancy is one of the main breeding grounds for rhinos in Kenya and has enjoyed great successes in spite of challenges, which need to be dealt with. Elsewhere in East Africa, Uganda had lost her entire population of rhinos in the early 1980s, when dictatorships turned a blind eye to poaching or when allegedly regime members were part and parcel of the poaching rings, and only a few years ago did the Rhino Fund Uganda bring the Southern White species back into the country and started a breeding program on the Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary, where the three females have since given birth to three healthy young males.
Rhino mother and calf
Meanwhile in Kenya, breeding programs are much more advanced already, having commenced two-and-a-half decades earlier, when the Lewa Down Conservancy and the equally-private Solio Game Reserve were joined by the first two official rhino reserves in Lake Nakuru National Park and in Tsavo West National Park below the Ngulia escarpment. Relative newcomer Ol Pejeta, however, turned the tables on the more established breeding programs when it became the largest black rhino sanctuary in East Africa.
However, considering rhinoceros used to be present all across Africa, the fact that now having 100 be a milestone number is deeply disturbing. While the human population is growing at a runaway rate (almost 7,000,000,000, that is 7 billion) we are stuck celebrating rhinos reaching the three digit mark once again in this pristine Kenyan breeding habitat. As long there is a market for illegally killed and butchered animals we will continue to push many species to the brink of extinction, and if we do not pay attention, they will go over the edge never to be seen again.
To read the full article about Ol Pejeta click here