700+ Rhino's in 2013





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  1. #1
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    Default 700+ Rhino's in 2013

    After hearing on the radio that we will cross the 700 figure for the first time I'm trying to think of what the cause of this increase might be.

    Purely because of the increasing demand through popularity of the product in the east?
    Too easy to poach rhino's in SA and therefore poachers find it lucrative and thus increasing their supply?
    Increasing corruption by officials in our national parks?
    Or what

    2000 - a mere 7 rhino's, 2010 - 333, 2011 - 448, 2012 - 668, 2013 - Who knows. It's a hundredfold since the year 2000.

    Please keep discussions to the question at hand.
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    Sad, very sad
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    The lack of action and will by government?

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    (Safer to keep thoughts to yourself, otherwise...)
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    See here for some positive news on this front-

    http://www.iol.co.za/dailynews/news/...8#.UkxK8byJInU

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    Here's what the Environmental Investigation Agency, who have done superb work in investigating the supply routes, end users etc in Vietnam and elsewhere, have to say about it (I agree with them, and have written a column on it which appears tomorrow in print - I'll post it once published):

    Poaching increases as SA pushes legal rhino horn trade

    September 20, 2013

    LONDON & WASHINGTON, DC: The poaching of rhinos in South Africa has increased by more than three rhinos a week on average since Environmental Minister Edna Molewa called for a legal international trade in rhino horn, according to analysis by the non-profit Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA).

    From January 1 to March 13,2013, an average of 15.36 rhinos were poached each week in South Africa. On March 14, Minister Molewa revealed her support at the meeting of the member nations of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in Bangkok, Thailand, for a legal international rhino horn trade. CITES has long banned such a trade.

    Since the Minister’s announcement, a weekly average of 18.6 rhinos were poached between March 14 and September 19, totaling 505 rhinos. Today the 2013 total has now reached a grim new world record of 663 animals, just five short of South Africa’s 2012 record total of 668 poached rhinos. Kenya and India have also reported increased numbers of their rhinos poached this year.

    The EIA analysis is released to coincide with Sunday’s World Rhino Day which celebrates the five remaining rhino species, all of which are threatened by poaching to meet demand for their horns.

    EIA President Allan Thornton said: “South Africa is stimulating an ever-increasing and unsustainable demand for rhino horn in Vietnam, China and other countries that is fuelling the rhino poaching epidemic. South Africa’s policy signal to the global marketplace that rhino horn is a smart investment commodity is unleashing a tsunami of destruction on South Africa’s rhinos.”

    Fraudulent claims spread by Vietnamese crime syndicates and Government officials promoting rhino horn as a cure for cancer and other ailments have caused skyrocketing prices for rhino horn, while corrupt Vietnamese diplomatic officials implicated in illegal rhino horn trade in South Africa have gone unpunished. Alarming results from a recent consumer survey in Vietnam indicate that the potential rhino horn consumer base in Vietnam is three times the current level.

    “Rhinos are already being slaughtered at an unsustainable rate to feed the demand for an unsubstantiated ‘medicine’ in Vietnam,” said Mary Rice, Executive Director of EIA’s London office.

    “Powerful commercial interests in South Africa are seeking to cash in on their stockpiled horn at the expense of the conservation and survival of South Africa’s rhinos. Legalising rhino horn trade will reward the criminal kingpins behind the poaching, pushing rhinos inside and outside of South Africa ever closer to extinction.”

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    I have been saying that legalisation is not a solution from the beginning. Educate the Vietnamese on the facts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisTheron007 View Post
    I have been saying that legalisation is not a solution from the beginning. Educate the Vietnamese on the facts.
    You think people change their beliefs when presented with facts?
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    I own a place in Olifants River Game Reserve 60 kms north of Hoedspruit.Last Sunday night we had our first rhino fatality notwithstanding huge anti poaching measures.
    The interesting thing here was that the Rhino`s horn had recently been treated with a pink dye containing a poison meant to make the person (don't know if you can call them people) very sick.
    The poachers shot the rhino but fled without taking the horn.
    Was this because they realized it was useless ? and perhaps the message will be circulated that it is not worth the risk of capture or death hunting on the farm where the horns are worthless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by john pole View Post
    I own a place in Olifants River Game Reserve 60 kms north of Hoedspruit.Last Sunday night we had our first rhino fatality notwithstanding huge anti poaching measures.
    The interesting thing here was that the Rhino`s horn had recently been treated with a pink dye containing a poison meant to make the person (don't know if you can call them people) very sick.
    The poachers shot the rhino but fled without taking the horn.
    Was this because they realized it was useless ? and perhaps the message will be circulated that it is not worth the risk of capture or death hunting on the farm where the horns are worthless.
    Sadly they will still kill the rhino. It saves them tracking it again.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OwenD View Post
    You think people change their beliefs when presented with facts?
    Have you read Tony's post?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Weaver View Post

    Fraudulent claims spread by Vietnamese crime syndicates and Government officials promoting rhino horn as a cure for cancer and other ailments have caused skyrocketing prices for rhino horn, while corrupt Vietnamese diplomatic officials implicated in illegal rhino horn trade in South Africa have gone unpunished. Alarming results from a recent consumer survey in Vietnam indicate that the potential rhino horn consumer base in Vietnam is three times the current level.”
    Apparently so. It seems their beliefs are being changed already. Only not with facts and not in the favour of the rhino's. IMHO, we have a better chance of changing the demand than controlling the trade.

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    http://4x4community.co.za/forum/show...ht=tony+weaver


    I posted the column here.

    the 'increase in poaching since the announcement ' - well, I am sure other factors come into play... you can get statistics to say what you like.

    the daily average last year was pretty horrendous, but it was half of what it was before the announcement, and half again the year before. Rhino poaching has been steadily rising for 8 years, so , really, thats the most blantant dumb use of statistics I've ever seen. If you draw up a graph with a line on it day to day over the last 10 years, it will be steadily rising and the day of the speech will be barely a blip.

    While I agree that legalising trade and encouraging 'farming' of Rhino / Horn is not the ideal solution it's A SOLUTION.

    the current solution - to make Rhino horn and poaching more and more illegal, shooting to kill, poisoning horns - is not working very well, sorry to say.

    It's very easy to come up with 500 reasons why legalising might not work - and 500 why it might.

    but - it can hardly be worse than the current situation...
    Last edited by Apocalypse; 2013/10/04 at 01:25 PM.

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    The further I read Tony's post, the more shivers went down my spine!!! I knew legalising the rhino horn trade would have devastating consequences on conservation but that's a different discussion. So if a sharp increase in poaching came just after the minister's announcement, I can just hope and pray they can connect the dots and come to their senses. They themselves are responsible for the increase in poaching then
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    Werner, don't get sucked in by people manipulating numbers to tell the story they want you to hear.

    okay - so first 10 weeks of 2013 - 15.36/week average
    since then - 28 weeks - average - 18.6 / week average

    but...

    2012 - 668 poached = 12.8/week
    2011 - 443 = 8.5/week.

    and if you look, at the beginning of the year the rate was lower than the end in all cases - it literally increases week by week.

    what dire words did the minister utter that caused the increase in each of those months.

    the reality is that it's an exponential progression and it's been increasing weekly for years.

    Using poor statistics like that to support an argument is pretty shameful actually.

    Stats - in context are useful. manipulated to support a standpoint is not useful at all. it's just false and , frankly, reckless.

    The reality here is that the announcemnt made no difference whatsoever. those Rhinos would have been killed regardless.

    - While it's not a nice thought that Rhinos will be farmed for their horn - legalising trade IS a possible solution for the problem.

    the other solution - to carry on as we are - not working very well.

    Are there any other solutions out there?

    no.



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    Last edited by Apocalypse; 2013/10/04 at 01:54 PM.

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    given the continuing exponential increase in numbers poached - which is an annual increase over the last 5 years of between 33 and 100% pa - http://www.savetherhino.org/latest_n...oaching_update

    we can actually expect that the number will hit 900 this year.

    yup.

    and over 1300 next year.

    2000 the year after.

    and - the market will absorb all the Horn they can get.

    what is currently being done - well, it's not working , and it's getting worse.

    the syndicates have made enough money off poaching that they are able to practically fight a war like a nation.

    They have no shortage of soldiers who will take a few grand to go out and risk their lives to take a Rhino - and will have no qualms about killing anyone that tries to kill them, or take them down.

    As I say, while legalising trade is not the ideal solution - it's an alternative solution - and there aren't many other options.

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    Further horrible things to know...

    On world Rhino Day - a pointless exercise, because the only people who acknowledge it, are not Rhino horn buyers - statistically, at least 2 - more likely 3 - Rhino will be poached. and it's not because someone proposed legalising trade.

    It's because IT'S IN DEMAND AND PROFITABLE.

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    Okay, stats aside, so if corrupt Vietnamese officials and dealers are also to blame for the "artificial" interest and demand in rhino horn products, then our government should intensify their efforts NOW to try and kill those myths. It's time for them to start to play hardball with those governments and demand action or trade between the two countries could suffer.
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    Quote Originally Posted by WernerS View Post
    Okay, stats aside, so if corrupt Vietnamese officials and dealers are also to blame for the "artificial" interest and demand in rhino horn products, then our government should intensify their efforts NOW to try and kill those myths. It's time for them to start to play hardball with those governments and demand action or trade between the two countries could suffer.
    well, lets say it like it is.

    China, Vietnam and Arab countries.

    do you REALLY BELIEVE that any African government can even begin to play hardball with China? do we really want to play hardball with the Arabic countries?

    does it MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE WHATSOEVER to Vietnam if they stop trading with SA? we are not even a significant market to any of those countries.

    Maybe if the USA did -but they didn't get much co operation out of Vietnam when they were Napalming them daily.


    It's exactly like the drug trade (except that, as Tony Points out, eventually we'll run out of Rhinos, but that makes no difference to the users) and you CANNOT win a drug war.

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    Quite honestly - I think that article is very bad.


    http://www.eia-international.org/poa...ino-horn-trade

    phrases such as this:

    EIA President Allan Thornton said: “South Africa is stimulating an ever-increasing and unsustainable demand for rhino horn in Vietnam, China and other countries that is fuelling the rhino poaching epidemic

    are practically slanderous, and totally untrue.

    Given the determination of criminals to obtain Rhino horn, I think SA is doing all it can to prevent the scourge.


    An alternative solution - to legalise - while not popular, might be viable, and is proven to be viable if one looks at places where drugs have been legalised - and should be considered.

    the other option is to declare a state of emergency, reinstate the death penalty and put anyone connected with Rhino Poaching in any way - Vietnamese Diplomat or not - against a wall and shoot them - publically.

    there are 2 problems with that.

    I'd hate our current government to have the kind of power that goes with a state of emergency.

    and second, we'd be putting an awful lot of south African officials up against that wall too.

    the actual 'poacher' - the guy that actually kills the animal and cuts off the horn - you might as well leave them alone.

    they are just working. and there is no shortage of them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisTheron007 View Post
    Have you read Tony's post?



    Apparently so. It seems their beliefs are being changed already. Only not with facts and not in the favour of the rhino's. IMHO, we have a better chance of changing the demand than controlling the trade.
    I have and I disagree with it.

    Correlation does not imply causation

    The number of rhino poached is increasing. We know that. Regardless of the Ministers announcement, you think that it wasn't increasing already?

    Please... maybe the increase in rhino poaching has caused the drop in UK housing prices over the last 8 months?

    I also disagree with the notion that facts change beliefs.

    You don't have to look much further than this forum to see that, or look at how many people believe that antioxidant supplements can help prevent disease, or trust in a 'detox' regiment, or believe in homeopathy.

    And these are educated people, with the facts at their fingertips and heads in the sand.
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