If you’re seeking information about the illegal rhino horn trade and rhino conservation issues, you’ve come to the right place: The Saving Rhinos website.
DID YOU KNOW …
- The world’s rhino population has declined 90% since 1970.
- Four of the five species of rhinoceros are in danger of extinction in the wild.
- Two subspecies of rhinoceros — the Vietnamese Javan rhino and the Western black rhino — have been declared extinct within the last ten years.
- The illegal trade in rhino horn is operated by international crime syndicates.
- Rhino horn contains no medicinal properties (and was never prescribed as an aphrodisiac in traditional Chinese medicine).
- Rhino horn trafficking is a global crisis: Arrests have been made in the United States, United Kingdom, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, China, Thailand, Vietnam, India, Nepal, Kenya, South Africa, and Zimbabwe.
- Some of South Africa’s game industry insiders have been caught conspiring with rhino horn traffickers to use legal trophy hunting as a front to launder illegal rhino horn.
- Yemen was the main destination for illegal rhino horn in the 1970s and 1980s, but today, Vietnam and China are the epicenter of the illegal rhino horn trade.
- The demand for palm oil used in common household products is taking its toll on the Sumatran and Javan Rhino populations by destroying their rainforest habitat in Indonesia.
But wait, there’s more.
- Suspicions Confirmed – China Investing Millions in Rhino Horn Scheme : Nearly a year after we began raising questions about the connections between China’s traditional medicine industry investments, research proposals about rhino horn harvesting, and live rhinos imported from South Africa, our suspicions were confirmed in 2011: China has indeed been plowing millions of dollars into building a thriving industry based on the medicinal use of rhino horn.
- South African Insiders and Illegal Rhino Horn Trade: In 2010, we warned that unscrupulous game industry insiders – and the ‘mismanagement’ of private rhino horn stockpiles – could be fueling demand for rhino horn from within South Africa. One of the most disturbing developments in the escalating illegal rhino horn trade is the proliferation of nefarious business alliances between unscrupulous members of the South African rhino conservation community and international crime syndicates. While several of these syndicate suspects have been arrested, the South African courts have yet to impose any serious punishment for such crimes.
- Illegal Trade in Rhino Horn: The Vietnamese Connection: The demand for rhino horn in Vietnam has increased substantially over the past few years, and the country is currently considered a significant factor in the illegal rhino horn trade. Most rhino horn entering Vietnam is sourced from South Africa. Rhino horn is obtained for consumption (quasi-) legally via trophy hunts, and illegally from rhino horn dealers operating in South Africa. Not only is the demand for rhino horn as a curative widespread in urban areas of Vietnam, but rhino horn and special tools for grinding rhino horn are offered for sale in shops and online.
- The Rhino Killers of India: Assam’s rhinos remain under threat by rhino horn smuggling gangs who recruit impoverished locals and prey on precious pachyderms. These gangs targeting the greater one-horned rhinos of Kaziranga and Orang National Parks are the scourge of Assam’s conservation efforts – but who are these murderers and where do they come from?
“We need to teach people to stop thinking of rhino horn as a valuable commodity and start focusing on the facts. Rhino horn has no medicinal properties, no curative benefits, and no magical powers.” – Rhishja Cota-Larson, founder of Annamiticus (and savingrhinos.org), author of Murder, Myths & Medicine and over 600 blog posts about rhino horn trade and wildlife trafficking.