When reading a recent article by Duncan Alfreds about the severity of the rhino poaching problem, I was struck by the realisation of how bad rhino poaching has actually gotten. Rhino poaching has been a problem for many years as their horns are used for various traditional medicinal and other reasons and sold on the black market for an extremely large sum of money. However, rhino poaching has not been slowing down or decreasing. This is evident in the disturbing news that poaching has increased so much that a significant decrease in the overall number of rhino can be seen.
Much awareness has been spread across South Africa, for example by use of the plastic red rhino horns that can be attached to the front of motor vehicles and the red, brown and white beaded bracelets from which all proceeds go to stopping rhino poaching. While there has been much awareness in South Africa about this problem, it may not be fully clear that despite all efforts to catch and arrest poachers, the problem is still slowly increasing in intensity.
Shows on Animal Planet and the Discovery Channel such as Battleground: Rhino Wars give a look into the process of finding and catching rhino poachers in the Kruger National Park and Mozambique, where the problem is specifically bad. It is informative and interesting to watch shows such as the one mentioned above as it gives an insider view of what catching out rhino poachers entails and how difficult, expensive and time consuming the job is.
Rhino poaching continues to be a present and serious problem in South Africa as well as neighbouring countries such as Mozambique. While awareness continues to be important, raising funds is also fundamental in aiding the stopping and punishment of rhino poachers.
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