Poachers accessing the Kruger National Park from Mozambique are, according to an Army officer, not as big a problem currently as people living on the western side of the internationally renowned game reserve.
Seattle-based biotechnology startup that hopes to grow rhino horns in a laboratory says it has already produced a batch of rhino horn powder.
The first batch of powder was primarily protein-based and didn’t have any genetic components of a rhino, said Matthew Markus, a biologist and CEO of Pembient.
He took some of the chalky, greyish powder to Vietnam, a major consumer of rhino horns and its products, to see how regular users react to it. “I wanted to see whether or not (the powder) matched with what they were using for smell and texture … people were generally receptive.”...
How governments combat poaching as the nature of the crime changes.
A South African rhinoceros, once dead, can travel thousands of miles. Under some circumstances, its horn can trek to places as far away as Vietnam and China. Once there, it transforms into a product for spiritual medicine or a sign of wealth and class. Meanwhile, the rest of its body stays rotting in the grass, and its species inches closer to extinction.
In 2014, poachers killed a record number of the beasts for their horns, according to official numbers published by the South African government’s Department of Environmental Affairs. The number of rhinoceroses that were killed is triple that of four years ago, and the value of their horns by weight is now greater than that of gold. The complex spiritual roots of this illegal market make it difficult to pinpoint the source or perpetuating causes of it; thus, effective solutions increasingly require strong regulations and governmental commitment....
South Africa said that it had moved around 100 rhinos to unspecified neighbouring states as part of efforts to stem the illicit slaughter of the animals for their horns. Home to around 80 per cent of the global rhino population, South Africa is at the epicentre of a poaching crisis. Government...
With no official information from the Department of Environmental Affairs since January 22 on rhino killings, it appears South Africans are being kept in the dark as to whether or not the country is winning the war against rhino poaching.
Although most Americans will never encounter a wild rhino in their lifetimes, the United States has recognized the global threat posed by poaching, the profits of which have been shown to support criminal networks and militant groups throughout Africa. A year ago, the Obama administration announced a "National Strategy for Combating Wildlife Trafficking."
The strategy is laudable. It calls for a three-part approach: enhanced enforcement of anti-poaching laws, better international collaboration on the issue and efforts to reduce demand for wildlife products like rhino horn. Unfortunately, this month when the administration announced its implementation plan for the strategy, it undermined its own goals.
The implementation plan calls for the U.S. to devote hundreds of millions of dollars to policing wildlife poaching and trafficking, but it provides virtually no funds for reducing demand, not even in the United States, which has been assessed by some as the world's second-largest market for illegal wildlife products.
I'm an economist by training, and I can tell you, if common sense doesn't, that trying to restrict supply without restricting demand is likely only to drive up price. That's how we have spent trillions on drug enforcement with little to show for it....
Harare - Poachers in Zimbabwe are targeting small rhino for their horns, a ranger said on Monday.
Two rhino calves were among the five black rhino killed by poachers in the south of the wildlife conservation region Save Valley Conservancy last year, Bryce Clemence of Anti-Poaching and Tracking Specialists (ATS) told Sapa....
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