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Rhino Crisis Round Up: Four Arrested in Nepal, Sumatran Rhino Pregnancy & More

Photo © International Rhino Foundation

This week, authorities in Nepal confiscated a rhino horn and arrested four people, including three policemen.

The Himalayan Times identified the suspects as Constable Dambar Bahadur Tamang, Head Constable Bhupal Thapa, Constable Bishnu Subedi and Solti Gurung.

It was noted that Thapa and Subedi had previous departmental violations.

Deadly shootout

In Zimbabwe, a shootout turned deadly when a rhino killing gang fired on rangers in the Tshakabika area of Sinamatela National Park.

Zoutnet reported one of the gang members, believed to be Zambian, was shot dead when anti-poaching patrol returned fire in self-defense.

An AK-47 assault rifle, ammunition, an axe, and an elephant tusk were among the items recovered from the deceased.

Warning signs in Namibia

Considering South Africa’s well-known trophy hunting scam, Namibia’s recent issuance of a rhino hunting permit to a Vietnamese national could be a warning sign.

Besides the disconcerting hunting permit, a recent article in The Namibian claims there is a “legalized” rhino horn trade movement afoot in the county. Similar to the aforementioned trophy hunt swindlers, these rhino horn profiteers seem to be linked to nefarious activities, such as laundering illegal rhino horn.

South Africa and Mozambique rhino meeting

According to joint media release issued by SANParks and the Mozambican TFCA Unit, the Minister of Tourism in Mozambique, Minister Fernando Sumbana Jnr, and the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs in South Africa, Minister Edna Molewa, met in Pretoria earlier this week regarding the rhino killings which involve both countries.

The porous border is a continuing problem, as criminals frequently slip away with rhino horns into Mozambique.

Minister Sumbana said that Mozambique is currently considering stronger penalties for wildlife crimes, as the country’s “natural resources are being plundered by organized Mafia.”

Of the 448 rhinos slaughtered last year in South Africa, 252 were killed in Kruger National Park. 

Rare Sumatran rhino pregnancy

Exciting news from the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary in Indonesia: A baby Sumatran rhino is on the way!

Ratu has just completed her eleventh month of pregnancy, and the new calf is expected to arrive in late spring/early summer.

Photo © International Rhino Foundation

The baby’s father is world-famous Andalas, who was born at the Cincinnati Zoo, and later moved to the 250-acre Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary in 2007, where he resides with Ratu and two other females, Rosa and Bina.

Fewer than 200 Sumatran rhinos are still surviving in fragmented pockets of Indonesia and Malaysia.

Executive director of the International Rhino Foundation, Dr. Susie Ellis, is hopeful about Ratu’s pregnancy.

We’ve got fingers crossed that everything will continue to go well and that Ratu will deliver a healthy baby sometime in late spring or early summer. This is truly a dedicated team effort, not just with regard to managing a critical pregnancy, but also in terms of the round-the-clock effort to protect Indonesia’s last remaining wild Sumatran rhinos.

We couldn’t hope to accomplish either without the generous support we receive from concerned people all over the world.

The International Rhino Foundation, through its on-the-ground partner, the Rhino Foundation of Indonesia, funds the operation of the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary and supports Rhino Protection Units that safeguard the last remaining wild populations of Sumatran and Javan rhinos.

To help support the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary, visit the International Rhino Foundation.

Photo #1 & #3 courtesy & © International Rhino Foundation; black rhino calf in Namibia via Shutterstock.




2 comments
  1. Carolyn Pipkin

    The cruelty of this is so heartbreaking and its dreadful and shameful that it has not been stopped. Is it feasible to have the rhino’s horns removed humanely by caring vets to stop rhinos being slaughtered so cruelly and being such a target for these wicked poachers?

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