Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Sat Mar 26, 2016 3:13 pm

Toko wrote:I wonder how much environmental and social damage they are responsible for altogether

All done in the name of philanthropy, of course! =O:

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Sat Mar 26, 2016 3:15 pm


A lot of the super rich who made their money by destroying the environment come up with some safe the nature or the rhino or anything else projects :-0

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Sat Mar 26, 2016 3:41 pm

They can deduct it from the taxes O**

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:23 pm

Another article about Australian Rhino Project with more details ... 0614418338

Looks like they become zoo animals in safari parks

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Sat Apr 09, 2016 11:00 am

Why Australia?

Although unconvinced anywhere is 100 per cent safe for the animals, Ray said he believes Australia’s strong border-security, the lack of comparable poverty and poaching-free history will make it a much safer option.

Roan adds that Australia provides a range of positives as the rhinos’ home away from home – a similar climate and habitat to Africa, vegetation with the potential to be used as browse, a lack of diseases and parasites that the animals would normally be exposed to and protection from poaching.

“Australia has abundant safety, land, resources (money, people) and is outside of the traditional poaching syndicate links,” he said, adding, “also – Australia will be harder and not as viable an option for syndicates to set up and travel to target one population.”

The "why" was on my mind... But to me the explanation sounds quite sensible.

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Mon Apr 11, 2016 6:29 pm ... ey-2007591

Young rhino shot dead in Kimberley
11 April 2016 at 09:20am
By: Murray Swart - Staff Reporter

Kimberley - The carcass of a young female white rhino was discovered on a farm just outside apparent victim of poachers.

The Northern Cape Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (Hawks) on Sunday confirmed that the animal was shot.

They were called to the scene on Friday and found the remains of the endangered animal with horns still intact.

While the Hawks were not willing to reveal where the carcass was found, as it may pose a threat to other animals, provincial spokesman, Lieutenant Philani Nkwalase, said that it appears as if the rhino was wounded somewhere else a week earlier, before fleeing and eventually dying where she was found.

“She was found with a bullet wound to the front right shoulder and appears to have died approximately a week ago, as her body was in a decomposed state,” Nkwalase said on Sunday.

“An autopsy was performed on the animal at the scene and while there was a clear entrance wound and no exit wound, no projectile has been found yet.”

The provincial head of the Hawks, Major-General Kholekile Galawe, urged farm owners and employees to be more vigilant in preserving rhinos.

“Any suspicious and unknown vehicles or persons in the farming area should be reported immediately...perhaps our swift response could help in combating rhino poaching,” Galawe said.

Spokesman for the Northern Cape Department of Environmental Affairs, Lesego Pule, said that the department had received reports regarding the incident, but was unable to confirm it on Sunday.

“We have heard that the carcass of a rhino was found outside Kimberley on Friday but are yet to receive 100 percent confirmation at this stage,” Pule said late Sunday afternoon.

“In the last financial year, which ended at the beginning of March, we had no reports of rhino poaching in the Northern Cape, so this appears to be the first case in quite a while.”

In October 2014, South African National Parks (SANParks) issued a tender to sell about 200 white rhinos, with acting managing executive for conservation services, Howard Hendricks, confirming that private buyers had been approached.

Hendricks explained that the aim of these sale was to promote the establishment and growth of a secure and viable rhino population under private landowners, whose bids were subject to stringent requirements, including a habitat assessment and the submission of a security plan.

This came a year after the public protector was called in to investigate the sale of 260 rhinos by SANParks to three private hunting farms in the Northern Cape following Minister of Environmental Affairs, Edna Molewa’s announcement in August 2013 that 500 rhinos from the Kruger National Park would be relocated in order to ensure their continued safety.

According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, more than 1 338 rhinos were killed in Africa last year, which is the highest number since the wave of poaching began in 2008.

Of those, 1 175 were killed in South Africa, home to about 80 percent of the continent’s rhino.

Poachers in Africa have slaughtered nearly 6 000 rhinos since 2008, and some conservationists warn that the 25 000 or so remaining wild rhinos could be gone within a decade.

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Thu Mar 02, 2017 7:46 am

18% crash in Kruger white rhino population

Posted: February 28, 2017

The combined effects of drought and poaching have reduced estimated white rhino numbers in South Africa’s Kruger National Park by 18% during the past year, according to the latest official figures. See point 4 below, for more information about this specific statistic. This amid a decline in poaching statistics generally.

South African Minister of Environmental Affairs Edna Molewa last night issued a lengthy report back on the Integrated Strategic Management of Rhino during 2016. Here then are the 10 facts from her report that we think you should be aware of.

1. A total of 1 054 rhinos were poached nationwide in 2016 (1 175 in 2015) – a decline of 10.3%;

2. Specifically for the Kruger National Park, a total of 662 rhino carcasses were found in 2016 (826 in 2015) – a decline of 19.85%;

3. Again for Kruger, there were a staggering 2 883 instances of poaching-related activities in 2016 (2 466 in 2015) – an increase of 16.9%. These include poaching camps, contacts, crossings, sightings, tracks and shots fired. These criminal gangs are armed to the teeth, well-funded and part of transnational syndicates who will stop at nothing to get their hands on rhino horn;

4. White rhino population estimate in Kruger is 6 649 – 7 830 (corresponding 2015 estimate was 8 365 – 9 337) – a decrease of 18%. It must be noted that there was an increase in natural deaths of white rhinos due to the unprecedented drought conditions;

5. Black rhino population estimate in Kruger is 349 – 465 (corresponding 2015 estimate was 313 – 453 – an increase of 6%. The drought effect was not as noticeable on black rhinos;

6. 46 elephants were poached in the Kruger (no 2015 figure provided);

7. 11 rhinos were internally translocated away from boundaries in the Kruger for security reasons – part of an ongoing internal translocation strategy;

8. 106 rhinos were translocated from national parks to private strongholds, and none of these were poached;

9. There are approximately 38 orphans under the care of Kruger National Park and partners and Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife;

10. 680 poachers and traffickers were arrested for rhino-related poaching offences nationally (317 in 2015). Of this number, 417 were arrested in or near the Kruger National Park. 148 firearms were seized inside the Kruger, and 6 just outside the park;

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:00 pm

I am very curious about these White Rhino "census" guesstimates. It seems a decrease of around 1500 in a year, including the 660 poached carcasses found. Normal natural deaths are constant regarding any population over the years, and are normally balanced by births.

Natural mortality rhino carcasses that are found are carefully documented, with the horns being removed for safekeeping. At least this is the policy...

Now to say that the drought has led to an EXTRA let's say 600 deaths, conservatively, needs very careful analysis and study, and proof for that matter. While dying hippo and buffalo were often reported over the last two years by tourists, rhino were not really, unless I missed something?

The drought started hitting heavily in certain areas in 2015 already, but was not mentioned as a cause of population decline then.

I spoke to a veteran Kruger scientist, who says this drought is/was especially vicious, and as always the theory is possible, as grass was gone in many areas, but needs to be authenticated. (Kruger is on hyper rhino carcass alert, so carcass identification should be simpler to categorise and analyse. Tellingly, there were few rhino deaths reported in the big 1992 drought.

Once again, no extensive conclusive aerial census has been done in Kruger since 2006, or earlier depending on the use of aerial photographs, so the fluctuating estimates of numbers conflict and bear little reliable scrutiny, IMO.

Something doesn't add up.

I would venture to guess that the sharper decline in numbers is simply due to the "tipping point" having been reached two years ago already, whereby the mating and calving complications caused by sustained poaching and removals/translocations of the population is now coming to the surface.

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:47 pm

After having stayed in a South African hospital for almost a month, I think that I start to understand the way things are working and how staff are trained, which also influences all the rest of the society, included counting rhinos 0*\

Re: Rhino Census and Rhino Relocations

Thu Mar 02, 2017 9:03 pm

Is government being honest about how rhinos are dying?

Amanda Watson

Or are they using ‘the drought’ as a convenient excuse in a numbers game to cover up the epidemic of poaching?

The numbers regarding rhino mortality in South Africa, and specifically SA National Parks’ (SANParks’) Kruger National Park, are not adding up.

It was a pleased department of environmental affairs (DEA) that claimed another drop in the number of poached carcasses discovered in South Africa for the second year in a row, now down to 1 054 for 2016.

But here’s where it starts being complicated:

“We have found that the deaths of rhino in the KNP, as a result of the drought or drought condition, has risen,” the DEA said in its statement.

This number is not recorded and the DEA referred The Citizen to SANParks for comment.

“Those numbers are for the whole of 2016,” said SANParks’ most senior spokesperson, William Mabasa.

“The numbers issued by the ministry are strictly for poached animals,” Mabasa said.

But he then contradicted himself by saying: “It depends on when the animal died and when was the census done.”

Mabasa confirmed that when rhino were poached, the details were given to the department as soon as they became known, but Mabasa could not specify whethe the poached number of rhino was included in the yearly census, or not.

He referred The Citizen to the DEA, which had earlier referred us to SANParks.

The seeming obfuscation sheds no further light on how many rhino died from drought, how many actually died from a poacher’s bullet, how many were translocated, and how many, approximately, are actually in South Africa.

Approximately, because a true number is almost impossible to obtain given the dense thicket the animal will almost always try and hide in when it hears a helicopter overhead.

According to the DEA statement, a rhino survey in September 2016 using the scientifically accepted block-count method recorded that a total of 6 649 to 7 830 white rhino lived in the Kruger National Park.

This was lower than the 8 365 to 9 337 that lived in the park during 2015.

“It must be noted that the natural deaths of white rhino increased due to the unprecedented drought conditions,” said the DEA.

In an admittedly oversimplified calculation, 8 365 minus 6 649 equals 1716 plus 662 animals poached means that about 2 378 rhino disappeared from the books last year in the Kruger National Park alone.

However, says an Outraged SA Citizens Against Poaching (Oscap) source, where are the carcasses?

Using averages with a margin of error (see box below), the Oscap source said if the actual decrease was only 847 rhino lost, then the reported poaching and relocation would account for nearly 100% of these losses.

“This would be a very positive outcome, and would make sense, since the growth rate, if poaching was ignored, would likely still be positive (more are born than die naturally) despite the drought. The drought is likely to decrease nativity, lengthen gestation, etc, but is not likely to send the population into decline on its own,” said the source.

“After all, as many have said, we did not see (non-poached) carcasses of rhino, or even slightly emaciated rhino, but we know they are drought-resilient because of very effective digestive systems that can process even the least palatable of grass.

“On the other hand, if the decrease is closer to 2 377 rhinos lost, we are looking at devastating losses due to natural causes or a possible scandal of rhino disappearing ‘off the books’ by artificial means.

“In this case, 1 533 had to have died from ‘natural’ causes, but as already explained, this makes very little sense. Some rhino might have migrated into adjacent reserves on the western border in search of better grazing, and thus evaded the count.

“In conclusion, the number of rhino poached is either the only major negative contributor to the KNP rhino population or rhinos are being ‘made to disappear’ under the smokescreen of the drought,” said the source.

According to the DEA, 106 rhino were translocated during 2016 to private rhino strongholds, following suitability assessments conducted by SANParks late last year.

“Overall, our translocations have been successful and no translocated rhino were poached,” DEA said.

Somewhere in the middle, the truth lies.

Rhino statistical maths (eish, numbers)
Let the ‘average’ population from 2015 be ‘A’ and that from 2016 be ‘B’, and the error margin on those values be ‘a’ and ‘b’, respectively. Hence, eg, A = 8851, and a=486, so that A+a=9337 and A-a=8365. This gives the range reported by the minister.

Then, define C = A – B. This should give the 1612 difference. The mathematically correct way of calculating the corresponding error margin on C, let’s call it ‘c’, is:

c = square root of [(a*a)+(b*b)], which, if a=486 and b=591, gives c=765.

This is how I calculated the other day that the number of rhino less from 2015 to 2016 lies between (C-c)=1612-765=847 and (C+c)=1612+765=2377.

Unfortunately, there is no way, from a purely statistical viewpoint, to give preference to any value within the reported range. That said, be very careful assuming that the average value, eg, the 1612 value, is the best representative value. It isn’t necessarily.

Just so, neither are the upper or lower limits. All we know is that the value lies somewhere in that range, and we can narrow it down based only on physical, real-world clues.