You've probably heard the grim report already: An astonishing 333 rhinos were killed illegally in South Africa in 2010--the highest rate ever experienced in the country. Ten of these were critically endangered black rhinos, of which only about 3,500 individuals still remain. Help WWF protect rhinos and other wildlife and habitats around the world from threats such as poaching--make a monthly donation today.
The recent rhino crime wave is largely due to a rising demand for rhino horn, which has long been prized as an ingredient in traditional Asian medicine. Its popularity increased in Vietnam after claims that rhino horn possesses cancer-curing properties, despite any medical evidence.
Today's wildlife poachers are well coordinated and employ advanced technologies. Their sophisticated criminal networks use helicopters, night-vision equipment, veterinary tranquilizers and silencers to kill rhinos at night--attempting to avoid military and law enforcement patrols.
How can we stop this?
WWF and TRAFFIC, our global wildlife trade program, are working to combat the crisis on a global scale. Locally, we support anti-poaching operations, introducing transmitters in rhino horns, facilitating regional dialogues on security and raising awareness among the public. WWF's Black Rhino Range Expansion Project in South Africa aims to increase the overall numbers of black rhino by making breeding lands available--with the goal of reaching a national target of 5,000 black rhinos. Globally, we are focusing on reducing demand in consumer nations and stopping wildlife trafficking through such initiatives as aiding enforcement officials to detect rhino horn in transit.
The rate of threatened wildlife poaching cannot continue unabated. We need your urgent help to protect these and other animals and their habitats.
Donate today to support WWF's global conservation work, and we'll send you a free rhino plush as a thank-you gift. Your monthly support will help preserve and protect our world's majestic species--like rhinos--and the habitats in which they live.
Together we can help protect the future of nature for generations to come.
Vice President, Membership
P.S. This new year has already begun with five more rhinos lost to poaching. Help us stop poachers and other threats to nature--please support wildlife and their habitats today.