Found throughout Eurasia and Africa, Rhinos are creatures we associate with the beauty of the African Savannas and Asian forests. Unfortunately, while they used to live in abundance, Rhinos are now scarce in the wild, and for the most part are only able to survive inside parks and reserves due to the immense threat of poaching and the destruction of their natural habitats. With species like the Javan and Sumatran being on the Critically Endangered list, Save the Rhino Day is the perfect opportunity to learn about, and educate others on how to preserve and conserve these incredible creatures.
Major Threats to Rhinos Include:
Illegal Wildlife Trade: Despite the fact that trading Rhino horns is banned under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora, poaching of Rhinos is still an incredibly prominent threat. Because Rhino horn is believed to act as a homeopathic remedy for curing fevers and hangovers, the selling of Rhino horns is popular in Asian medicine—most prominently Vietnam.
Habitat Loss: Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park was once thought to have the largest populations of Sumatran rhinos, but because the forest is now popular for illegal rice and coffee settlers, the land on which Rhinos rely is systematically being destroyed. Meanwhile, in Zimbabwe, land that once acted as Rhino conservancies are being infiltrated by “landless people,” which ultimately reduces the amount of safe land for the animals, and leads to an increase in poaching.
Disease: Because the Rhinos land is now used for agriculture, Rhinos are developing diseases that scientists believe were transmitted from the cattle in the parks, leading to increased number of Rhino deaths.
Here Are a Few Ways You Can Help Save the Rhinos!
Donate: The WWF (World Wildlife Foundation) is working tirelessly to help increase awareness, and raise money through donations to protect the Rhinos. When you make a donation in support of the WWF’s global conservation efforts, the foundation gives you a thank you gift in return! For anywhere between $25 and $250 the WWF allows you to symbolically adopt a Rhino, and in return get a stuffed animal version of your new pal, a photo of your Rhino, and Adoption Certificate and more. All proceeds will support WWF’s efforts around the world.
Educate and Make Change Happen: The WWF and eco18 believe that one of the most important ways to help Rhino conservation is to speak up and join the fight against wildlife crime. Like most other complicated issues, fighting against wildlife crime starts at the government. Here are a few suggestions from WWF on how you can speak up:
• Push governments to protect threatened animal populations by increasing law enforcement, imposing strict deterrents, reducing demand for endangered species products and honoring international commitments made under CITES.
• Speak up on behalf of those on the frontlines being threatened by armed poachers so they are properly equipped, trained and compensated.
• Reduce demand for illegal wildlife parts and products by encouraging others to ask questions and get the facts before buying any wildlife or plant product.
We ask you to please consider joining the fight wildlife destruction, and sign on to stop Wildlife Crime. You can sign your name and pledge to stop wildlife crime and commit to preserving nature’s beauty for future generations on WWF Action Page Here: