Zim rangers sing farewell to rhinos

2015-06-17 15:39

Harare - Heart-warming footage has emerged of a group of Zimbabwean rangers singing farewell to three black rhinos being airlifted to Botswana.

In a video posted to YouTube, the rangers stand in formation at the Buffalo Range Airport in Chiredzi, south-eastern Zimbabwe. As they sing, the camera pans to the rhino crate inside the aircraft.

The Malilangwe Trust, which donated the rare animals under a government-to-government programme, has since confirmed that the rhinos "have arrived safely and are all doing well".

The footage was taken on Sunday, four days after the first group of five rhino left for Botswana. The rangers then sang: 'We looked after you, now it’s Botswana’s turn to look after you.' They were singing in a local language, Shangani.

Hopes are high that Botswana's tough stance on poachers will keep these animals safe from harm.

The Malilangwe Trust says that the translocated animals are part of a rhino population that was first brought to the reserve in 1998 from KwaZulu-Natal. Zimbabwe has around 500 black rhinos and 300 white rhinos left, and according to Malilangwe "is facing challenges in financing [their] protection".

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