A white rhinoceros grazing at the Kruger National National Park near Skukuza. Picture:Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)
A white rhinoceros grazing at the Kruger National National Park near Skukuza. Picture:Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)

Seven white rhino carcasses found in eight days at Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park

By Thobeka Ngema Time of article published Nov 26, 2020

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Durban – Seven white rhino carcasses were found in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi Park (HiP) in eight days.

The Department of Economic Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (EDTEA) confirmed that seven rhino carcasses were discovered in different sections of the HiP between November 16 and November 23.

The department of EDTEA said while the carcasses were discovered during those days, indications are that some of the rhino were poached in previous months.

Here are the rhino, where they were found and how old they were estimated to be:

• 16 November 2020: One white rhino carcass was reported at Nqumeni Section; the carcass was estimated to be about three days old.

• 17 November 2020: One white rhino carcass was reported at Nqumeni Section; the carcass was estimated to be over six months old.

• 21 November 2020: One white rhino carcass was reported at Masinda Section; the carcass was estimated to be less than 24 hours old.

• 22 November 2020: One white rhino carcass reported in Makhamisa Section, the carcass was estimated to be about three days old.

• 22 November 2020: One white rhino carcass reported in Makhamisa Section, the carcass was estimated to be about twenty days old.

• 22 November 2020: One white rhino carcass reported in Makhamisa Section, the carcass was estimated to be about twenty days old.

• 23 November 2020: One white rhino carcass reported in Makhamisa Section, the carcass was estimated to be about three days old.

Ravi Pillay EDTEA MEC said: “It is concerning that rhino poaching continues at this scale. We must all appreciate the importance of Conservation and its value to our tourism sector - a major job creator. I will shortly be meeting the sector to better understand their challenges and consider possible interventions.”

“However, we are encouraged by the fact that while we have, since the beginning of the year, recorded a total of 88 poached rhinos this figure is lower than the 126 rhinos poached during the same period last year. We thank our personnel at Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife who, together with law enforcement agencies and conservationists, work tirelessly under dangerous conditions to protect our wildlife. We also commend communities for working with us to protect our rhino population.”

Earlier this week the Daily News reported that rhinos were poached despite the HiP having artificial intelligence cameras.

The department said detection camera technology was widely implemented across the sections of the park with good technical support provided by the project team.

Moreover, in November, this month, 18 324 images were captured by 85 cameras. The images have been taken and processed for the recognition of people and vehicles.

The department also said Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife continued with other operations to curb rhino poaching. These include patrols, observation points and vehicle checks. This is done with the direct support from the South African Police Services.

Daily News

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