Rhino Distribution in RSA and Africa
• Total Estimated Number of Rhino in RSA (2017)
• White Rhino 18 000 – 21 000
• Black Rhino 3 500 – 5 100
• Countries with larger populations: Namibia, Kenya, Zimbabwe
• Countries with populations 100+Animals: Botswana, Tanzania, Swaziland
• Few animals left in Malawi, Zambia, Uganda
• RSA Major Range State – with about 92% of world population of white rhino and about 50% of black rhino
• More or less 30% of rhino in RSA owned privately, now almost 7000
Did you know?
1. This majestic creature’s era began 55 million years ago.
2. Rhinoceros are derived from the Greek words Rhino (nose) and Ceros (Horn)
3. Let’s look at the every so often controversial research done on the evolution of the rhino.
• First was the Paraceratherium
• Woolly rhinos
- According to the Integrated Taxonomic Information System(ITIS), the taxonomy of rhinos are classified under:
- We have 5 species left on earth:
The Javan Rhino
The Sumatran Rhino
The Black Rhino
Greater one horned rhino
The White Rhino
- There are less than 67 Javan rhinos alive today.
- There are less than 80 Sumatran rhinos alive today.
- The Indian or greater one horned rhino’s population ranges between 3300-3600
- The Black Rhinos population is estimated at 5000-5500
- The White Rhino are the least threatened at 19666-21085, but numbers are still declining daily.
- All rhinoceroses belong to the mammalian order, Perissodactyla (from the Greek perissos, meaning numbers odd, and daktulos, meaning a finger or toe).
- Rhinos are classified as ungulates (mammals with hoofed feet)
- The closest relatives to the rhino today are horses, zebras and tapirs.
- Rhinos belong to the 19th century taxodermic order pachydermata, derived from the Greek works Pachys (Thick) and derma (skin).
- Rhinos are herbivores and categorised as either browsers or grazers.
- The Javan rhino eats a wide variety of plants, which they can grab with their upper lip. They prefer young stems and fallen fruit in clearings in the forest. The Javan Rhino like the Sumatran rhino needs salt in its diet.
- The Sumatran rhino is a browser and feeds of twigs fruit and bark.
- The Indian or greater horned rhino is a grazer, and feeds on tall grasses with its prehensile lip.
- Black rhinos are browsers and feed on thorny wood bushes and trees, they use their upper lip to pluck the leaves and fruit from the branches.
- The White Rhino is an exclusive grazer and can eat up to 56kg a day, nature’s own lawnmower. They will not eat leaves or fruit from trees and bushes.
- A group of rhinos living together are called a crash
- All Rhino wallow in mud pools to cover their skin in a protective layer, as thick and tough as their skin are, it stays highly sensitive to sunburn and the mud helps deter parasites as well.
- Rhinos can produce up to 25 kg of dung a day, this is not only a normal part of their digestive system, and this is a way of communicating with each other. Each rhino has a unique odor and they leave their dung in a specific spot to warn other rhino of their territory.
- Some rhinos including the white and the black rhino make use of middens or huge communal dung heaps, which act as a message board for all the rhinos in the area.
- These middens communicate the health and status of the rhinos in the area. For example when a dominant male defecates in the midden it chases off other subordinate males when a cow is in oestrus.
- Communal dung heaps are unfortunately also used by poachers to track down the Rhinos.
- The process where communication trough odors like the dung heaps are called olfacation, and this is the secret language the species use.
In a show of dominance, alpha male Indian rhinos can spray urine a distance of over 5 meters. This is naturally in the presence of other males or females in oestrus. All rhinos spray urine: For males this is characteristically for marking territory, while female rhinos have been observed spray urinating over 100 times in a day before giving birth, and sustained this behavior even after the calf was weaned, probably to protect the calf and mask its scent from predators and other rhinos.
- The scientific name for the Javan Rhino is: Rhinoceros sondaicus
- The scientific name for the Sumatran Rhino is: Dicerorhinus sumaternsis
- The scientific name for the Indian (Greater one horned Rhino) is: Rhinoceros unicornis
- The scientific name for the Black Rhino is: Diceros bicornis
- There were 4 subspecies of the Black Rhino who roamed the African Continent
The Southern Central Black Rhino: Diceros bicornis minor
The Eastern Black Rhino: Diceros bicornis michaeli
The South Western Black Rhino: Diceros bicornis bicornis
The Western Black Rhino: Diceros bicornis longipes (which are now classified as extinct by the ICUN)
- The scientific name for the White Rhino is: Ceratotherium simum simum
- There are two subspecies of the white rhino left on the African Continent
The Southern White Rhino: Ceratotherium simum simum
The Northern White Rhino: Ceratotherium simum cottoni
With the Northern White being functionally extinct as the last male Sudan passed away in March 2018.
- The Javan Rhino weighs 900-2300kg
- The Sumatran Rhino weighs 500-100kg
- The Black Rhino weighs 800-1400kg
- The Indian Rhino Weighs 1800-2700kg
- The White Rhino Weighs 1600-3500kg
- Rhino horns are made of keratin, which is also the key component of human hair and fingernails. But the horns are not just dense clumps of hair. Various research have confirmed a dense mineral deposits of calcium and melanin in the center of the horn. The calcium makes the horn stronger, and the melanin protects it from the sun’s UV rays. Which of cause are only useful to the rhino itself.
- Asian Rhinos have premolars molars as well as sharp lower incisor teeth which are used for feeding as well as fighting.
- The African Rhinos only have premolars and molars with no teeth in the front of the mouth.
- There are two species with one horn (The Greater one horned or Indian Rhino and the Javan Rhino)
- There are three species of rhino with two horns (The Sumatran Rhino, The Black Rhino and the White Rhino)
- The average Lifespan of a Javan Rhino is 35-40 years
- The average Lifespan of a Sumatran Rhino is 35-40 years
- The average Lifespan of a Black Rhino is 40 years
- The average Lifespan of an Indian Rhino is 40-50 years
- The average Lifespan of a White Rhino is 40-50 years
- A Rhinos footprint is like a human fingerprint, each rhino’s is unique.
- Each Rhinos species communicate with different sounds.
- A Javan Rhino is the less vocal rhino with only a few sounds ever recorded.
- A Sumatran Rhino is very vocal and their sounds range from Whistling to whining noises.
- The Black Rhinos sounds ranges from a mmwonk sound to a high pitched wonk and snorts.
- The Indian or Greater one horned rhino uses approximately 12 sounds to communicate which includes honks, Snorts and roars.
- A White Rhino pants, shrieks and puffs during communication.
- Habitat of the Javan Rhino is in Tropical landscapes in Western Java.
- The Sumatran Rhino lives in Dense Tropical Forests in Indonesia 54. The Black Rhino are found in Acacia Savannahs and Grasslands over Africa
- The Indian Greater one horned rhino are found in Swamp forests in India and Nepal
- The White Rhino are found in Grasslands on open Savannas in Africa
- Rhinos are known in terrestrial zoology as megafauna. (Large Animals)
- Javan Rhinos have special foot glands to help mark their territory.
- The White rhino can eat plants that are toxic to other animals.
- The average height of a Javan Rhino is 1.4-1.7m
- The average height of a Sumatran Rhino is 1-1.5m
- The average height of a Black Rhino is 1.6m
- The average height of an Indian/ Greater one horned Rhino is 1.75-1.9m
- The average height of a White Rhino is 1.6-1.8m
- Front horn lengths recorded from the Javan rhino’s horn is 26cm and the female have no horn at all
- The average length of the Sumatran rhino’s horn is 26-80cm
- The Black Rhino’s front horn can reach up to 140cm
- The white Rhino’s front horn can reach up to 150 cm
- White and black rhino’s use their horns not only to fight between each other for territory, but to defend their claves and steer them in the right direction. Other uses include searching for food (breaking off branches and digging for roots) as well as digging for water.
- The Asian rhinos don’t normally use their horns as a defense mechanism, but rely on their sharp incisors to fight for territory and to protect their young.
- All rhinos have unique footprints, like human fingerprints.
- All the 5 species of rhino have different shapes of footprints.
- The Javan Rhino cow reaches sexual maturity at age 3-4 years and the male at 6 years.
- The Sumatran Rhino cow reaches sexual maturity at age 6-7 years and the male at 10 years.
- The Black Rhino cow reaches sexual maturity at age 4-6 years and the male at 7-9 years.
- The Indian Rhino cow reaches sexual maturity at age 3-6 years and the male at 10-12 years.
- The White Rhino cow reaches sexual maturity at age 4-7 years and the male at 10-12 years.
- The Javan Rhino cow produces a single calve every 4-5 years.
- The Sumatran Rhino cow produces a single calve every 3-4 years.
- The Black Rhino cow produces a single calve every 4 years.
- The Indian Rhino cow produces a single calve every 3 years.
- The White Rhino cow produces a single calve every 2-3 years.
- Rhinos eyesight are not their most reliable sense, but to make up for that their hearing is impeccable, and their excellent sense of smell.
- An oxpecker or Tickbird is one of the rhinos best friends, they have a symbiotic relationship, where the oxpecker feeds from parasites like ticks on the rhinos body, the rhino gets rid of these unwelcome pests and the oxpecker makes a huge commotion when it spots any other animal or human, which then alerts the rhino on potential dangers nearby. In Swahili, the oxpecker is referred to as the “rhino’s guard
- Rhino Chromosomes all rhinos have 82 Chromosomes, the Black Rhino has 84 Chromosomes (diploid number, 2N, per cell)
- The classic Shakespeare play Macbeth mentions a rhino.
- The White and the black rhino are both actually grey.
- The difference in The Black and White rhino are believed but not supported by evidence to be inherited from the Dutch settlers who described the white rhino’s lips as Wijd (wide) and the misunderstanding was made that there are white and black rhinos in Africa.
- The most distinct difference between the black and the white rhino lies in their mouths.
- The White Rhino has a square flat mouth and the Black rhino a Hook Prehensile-Lip.
- The shape of the Rhinos lips will give us an indication if they are Grazers like the White Rhino or browsers like the black rhino.
- The Javan Rhino has a grey skin, which tend to look black when wet with a pink color in the folds.
- The Sumatran rhino has a reddish brown skin color.
- The Indian rhino has a thick grey-brown skin with pinkish folds and a black horn.
- Javan Rhinos are hairless except some on their ears, eyelashes and tail
- Sumatran Rhinos are the hairiest rhinos alive today and calves are totally covered in brown hair. Adults have a patch of thick hair on their ears and a clump of hair at its tail.
- The Black Rhino has little hair, except on their ears eyelashes and tails
- The Indian Rhino has very little hair, except on their ears eyelashes and tails
- The White Rhino has little hair on their bodies, they do however have hair on their ears eyelashes and tails
- There are no Javan Rhinos left in captivity, the only Rhinos left are a population less than 60 in the Ujung Kulon National Park at the tip of Java in Indonesia.
- All living Sumatran Rhinos live on the Peninsular Malaysia, the island of Sumatra, and Sabah, Borneo. And only a handful are living in captivity today.
- The Black Rhino can still be found in Namibia, South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania and Zimbabwe, and Chad. There are a quite a few successful breeding programs over the world in captivity.
- The Indian Greater One Horned Rhino can be found in a few places in Southern Nepal, Northern West Bengal and The Barahmaputra Valley. Some Great successes have been recorded for the captive breeding of the Indian rhino.
- The White Rhino can still be found in South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Kenya, Zambia, Uganda and Zimbabwe. Captive Breeding for white rhinos are also a success story.
- The Black Rhino have smaller rounder ears, a shorter forehead, a less noticeable hump and a concave back.
- The White Rhino Have a bigger head, a longer forehead, a thicker larger neck and ears and a huge hump.
- The Gestation period of all rhino species range from 14-16 months.
- All Rhino species tend to have a single calf; very few twins have been recorded.
- The average speed of a Javan Rhino is 40kph
- The average speed of a Sumatran Rhino is 40kph
- The average speed of a Black Rhino is 55kph
- The average speed of a Indian Rhino is 40kph
- The average speed of a White Rhino is 45-50kph
- The Length of a Javan Rhino can reach up to 4m
- The Length of a Sumatran Rhino reach be up to 2.5m
- The Length of a Black Rhino can reach up to 3.8m
- The Length of a Indian Rhino can Reach up to 3.8m
- The Length of a White Rhino can Reach up to 4m
- A Javan Rhinos are mostly solitary except for courtship and when a mother rears her calf. Some footage have been recorded where a group gather near salt licks or wallows.
- Sumatran Rhinos are very solitary as well. Females maintain permanent home ranges, Sumatran rhinos do meet, but only for mating periods and form short term bonds.
- Typically the Back Rhino are relatively solitary, cows stay with their calf in a unit. Sometimes a group of females without calves will stay together, but not for long periods.
- The Indian Rhino is usually solitary except a mother with her calf. Some loosely bound aggregations of a few individuals do occur around wallows or foraging areas
- White rhino are generally solitary animals, but can be sedentary and semi-social. Stable crashes of 6-8 animals is a common trait depending of the size of their home ground.
- Remember no matter which species of rhino you encounter a Mother Rhino will attack when she feels her calf is in danger.
- Javan Rhino bull’s territory can range from 12-20km2 while cows territory are smaller as 3-14km2
- Sumatran Rhino territory bull’s territory can range up to 50km2 while cows territory are smaller as 10-15km2
- Black Rhino territory bull’s territory can range up to 4-5km2 while cows territory are smaller as 6-8km2
- Territory of the Indian Rhino bull is between 2-8 km2, the cows territory tend to overlap.
- A white rhino bull’s territory varies between 1-3 km2 but are determined by many factors, a cow’s territory can vary between 6-20 km2 and can overlap several bulls’ territory
- A white rhino calf runs in front of its mother.
- A black rhino calf runs behind its mother.
- A controversial issue or a chance given to humans to correct the wrongs of their ancestors are the new innovative reproductive technologies that are going to be attempted to save the Northern White Rhino species, as the only two living Northern white rhino cows are in a non-breeding state.
- The Javan Rhino have two folds in the skin circling the body behind the front legs and before the hind legs, plus horizontal folds at the base of the legs. Two neck folds form a saddle like shape between the neck and shoulder. The skin is covered with a type of mosaic pattern that gives it a scale like appearance.
- The Sumatran Rhino is the smallest and the hairiest of all the rhinos alive today. They have a reddish brown skin which is covered in patches of short dark course hair.
- The Black Rhino are smaller than white rhino and requires less muscle strength around their necks because of its smaller size, and it keeps its head held high.
- The Indian Rhino has a thick grey brown skin with pink folds in its segmented hide between what looks likes like body armor, the Indian Rhino’s Upper legs and shoulders are covered in wart like bumps.
- The white Rhino has a very thick strong neck to keep its huge head steady and low to the ground for grazing purposes. The White rhino only picks up its head when alarmed.
- The White rhino is the second largest land animal after the elephant.
- The highest population numbers for the Javan Rhino is their current state.
- The Sumatran rhino’s numbers has decreased by 70% in the last 20 years
- The black rhino population numbers between 1960 – 1970 were 65000 in Africa, by 1993 there were only 2300 left.
- The Indian Rhinos population numbers has increased from less than 200 earlier in the 20th century to +-3500 today.
- The southern White rhino recovered form near extinction with numbers as low as 100 left in the wild in the early 1900 to approximately 21000 alive today.
- The Javan Rhino spends long periods of the day wallowing in mud pools, they are very shy and prefer to begin their search for food before dawn and after dusk.
- The Sumatran Rhino enjoys relaxing in ponds and mud wallows to cool their bodies down during day time, and feed during the night.
- The Black Rhino can be found either eating or sleeping during the day, but prefer to move around at night.
- The Indian Rhino enjoys water and stays near swamps were they can swim and dive for more food to eat under the water.
- The white rhino feeds and sleeps during the day, they spend a lot of time wallowing in mud pools and sleeping under bushes and trees during day time. When the African bush cools down they begin their long grazing hours.
- All Asian Rhinos are excellent swimmers and prefer to live near pools or swamps.
- The African Rhinos can go without water for 5 days.
- All rhinos need salts and minerals in their diet, especially the Javan and the Sumatran rhino needs a lot of salt in their diet, even if it they have to drink sea water.
- The Javan Rhino’s mating and courtship happens during a short period when the cow is in oestrus, this is generally the only time when the male and female socialise.
- During courtship the Sumatran Rhino female shows little signs of oestrus. When a female is ready for mating she will run around in circles and the bull will start following her.
- The Black rhino Bull blocks the cow when he senses she is ready for mating, the female will try to escape until she feels comfortable with the male.
- With the Indian Rhino courtship begins as the female chases after the male with rutting calls and groaning.
- With white rhino breeding pairs, the bull and cow stay together for two to three days, and mating occurs several times during this period.
- When the urine test (sensed through scent glands) reveals a cow approaching oestrus, the territorial bull will join the female for up to 20 days. He at first accompanies the female by keeping a fair distance, until she comes into full oestrus and allows him to approach. The courtship lasts up to a day, characterised by the male resting his chin on the female’s rump and attempted mounting. Finally, the cow will stand still, with tail curled, and allow copulation. Mating is remarkably prolonged, lasting from 20 minutes to one hour.
- It is believed that Black rhino bulls will fight to death over a territory or a cow in oestrus.
- A Rhino bull tends to be aggressive towards a calf if the mother of the calf is in oestrus. The bull will chase the calf away to mate with its mother. Smaller calves can get hurt in this process, and fatalities have been recorded.
- New born calves are very vulnerable and predators like hyenas are known to attack a new born calf. The mother will try her best to fend off any predators but as nature works you may find a rhino calf without an ear or tail or even killed by predators in the wild.
- 167. Rhino attacks on humans are very rare, fewer than 2 per year.
- The Black Rhino is the most aggressive, but it normally doesn’t deed to execute this aggression towards humans, they choose to stay as far away as possible. And this should always be respected.
- The White Rhino is more inquisitive and will allow closer proximity between itself and humans. They are calm by nature, but they will always be wild animals with a will of their own. And the animal instinct of fight or flight will always count, even with these gentle giants.
- The Javan, Sumatran and Indian rhinos are more likely to run away from any danger than the African Species.
- When a rhino charges a human or a vehicle it will only do so to fend off the danger, and not to inflict harm on purpose.
- Rhinos will not try to chase a human or vehicle without a reason or a warning so always be on the lookout for any signs that the animal feels threatened or changes in body language and sounds they make.
- Two to three hours after birth a newborn rhino calf are able to stand on its feet and start to nurse from the mother.
- Adult Rhinos have no natural predators, except of course the Human
- The reason why we only have 5 species of rhino left from the estimate 100 we had is of course the human, civil war in native lands and poaching for the Asian market has driven these majestic creatures to the brink of extinction.
- Habitat losses because of deforestation are another factor that has decimated the wild population of all rhinos.
- The increase in human population puts more strain on the rhino’s natural habitat, which accounts for the shrinking of the living space of rhinos and the increasing likelihood of contact with humans, which have tragic results for the rhinos.
- There are less than 30000 rhinos left on earth today.
- What is rhino horn? Rhino horns are similar in structure to horses’ hooves, turtle beaks, and cockatoo bills. They are made of keratin – the same chemical structure as human hair and nails.
- When a rhino horn gets trimmed, it smells exactly like burning human hair.
- Rhino Poaching world Wide: Poaching is not a new epidemic, poaching has been happening for thousands of years. The crisis began when the animals traditionally being killed started to decline in numbers. Poaching has been illegal for hundreds of years, but only in the late middle ages did poaching became a punishable offence.
- When Asia’s rhino population started to decline, the focus turned to Africa with its White and Black rhinos roaming freely on the vast African Savannahs.
- Before the 1970’s there were no exponential poaching crisis facing Africa. Then the increase in Eastern Wealth, and the new found acuity that Rhino Horn was a status symbol, had the path paved for the reckless decline of our continents rhino numbers.
- Internationally, the rhino horn trade is regulated by the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES)
- In 1976 CITES which consists of now 182 countries put a ban on the trade of Rhino Horn between countries.
- Unfortunately as with many other historical banning the Trade shifted from legal to the black market where it became uncontrollable and ruthless.
- In 2017 the ban was lifted for domestic trade, but South Africa is not the end user of rhino horn, so no benefits up to this stage for this lifting are felt.
- Three Rhinos are poached every day.
- Poaching Explained: South Africa has by far the largest population of rhinos in the world approximately 90% and is an extremely vital country for rhino conservation. From 2007-2015 the country experienced an exponential rise in rhino poaching – a growth of over 9,000%. Most illegal activity occurs in Kruger National Park, a 19,485 km2of protected habitat on South Africa’s north-eastern border with Mozambique. The National Kruger Park regularly writhed hefty poaching loses, and so in the last few years the government and international donors have channelled ever more funding and resources into securing the Park.
- Rhinos in the private sector are also under huge threat as there are approximately 350 private game reserves with an area of 2million hectares in South Africa. These reserves are home to about 35% of South Africa’s Rhino population. These privately owned reserves are responsible for the safety of their rhinos and do this with their private funds.
- In 2016, figures show a decline in poaching in South Africa for the second year in a row, indicating that increased protection efforts are paying off, or so we wish to believe. It is with a combined effort that these figures fall, but we need to eradicate this illness our Beautiful country suffers of in total. A rise in incidents outside Kruger National Park in our other National parks and private reserves makes this clear to all that the growing cleverness of poaching gangs that are spreading across the whole country and outside its borders as well.
- Poaching in The wider African context
The current poaching crisis actually began in Zimbabwe, where the difficult socio-economic and political climate facilitated rhino poaching. Once the easy pickings had been had in Zimbabwe, poaching gangs turned their attention to neighbouring South Africa, which saw massive increases in poaching from 2009-2014.
In around 2013, the South African poaching disaster spread to other countries in Africa. First Kenya was targeted – its worst year for poaching was in 2013, when 5% of the population got poached.
- In 2015 both Zimbabwe and Namibia were targeted: Namibia lost 80 rhinos to poaching, up from 25 in 2014 and just two in 2012; while in Zimbabwe at least 50 rhinos were poached in 2015, more than double the previous year. For Africa as a whole, the total number of rhinos poached during 2015 was the highest in two decades.
- Rhino poaching has escalated in recent years and is being driven by the demand for rhino horn in Asian countries, particularly Vietnam. It is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine but more and more commonly now it is used as a status symbol to display someone’s success and wealth. As South African is home to the majority of rhinos in the world it is being heavily targeted by poachers. However poaching is now a threat in all rhino range states and field programmes are having to investment heavily in anti-poaching activities.
- The scarcity of rhinos today and the corresponding intermittent availability of rhino horn only motivate the price to go escalate, and deepens the pressure on the declining rhino populations.
- Poachers are now being supplied by international criminal gangs with sophisticated equipment to track and kill rhinos. Poachers are mostly armed with guns making them very dangerous for the anti-poaching teams and private rhino owners who put their lives at stake to protect rhinos.
- Why would people want to use Rhino horn if it has no medicinal value? According to traditional Chinese texts, rhino horn has been used in Chinese medicine for more than 2000 and is used to treat fever, rheumatism, gout, and other disorders. It also states that the horn could also cure snakebites, hallucinations, typhoid, headaches, carbuncles, vomiting, food poisoning, and “devil possession.
- The increasing price of rhino horn (which is one of the highest commodities on earth today) has led to rhino horn being valued as a status symbol and many artefacts and jewellery are made from it and sold in Vietnam.
- Rhino Horn is currently more valuable per gram than gold, diamonds or cocaine.
- The Jambiya manufactured and used in Yemen is a dagger with its handle made from rhino horn.
- Dehorning/Trimming of the horn. According to many this is a very controversial issue, there is no one that needs rhino horn except a rhino. But which is the lesser of the two evils. Trimming a Rhino’s horn or losing the rhino completely by a poacher’s rifle?
- Facts on horn trimming, a rhino doesn’t need its horn to survive in the wild.
- With the dramatic increase in rhino poaching since 2008, the prevalence of trimming as an anti-poaching tool has increased on private land
- The whole process takes less than 20min and is pain free.
- The cocktail of drugs used to immobilise the rhino has a type of tranquiliser that helps to reduce the stress and give the rhino a type of amnesia about the whole process.
- Continual studies on the possible stress response on white rhino have shown that the measured stress levels of the rhino in a semi-captive breeding camp are stable and do not pose as high physiological affect towards horn trimming.
- Horn trimming have been done as early as in 1989 in Namibia to deter poachers
- When immobilized, earplugs are placed in the rhino’s ears, as their hearing is very sensitive and the sound of the human voices and equipment sound could cause additional stress.
- When rhino horns are being trimmed a catchment mat is placed underneath the head of the rhino to make sure all horn cut offs are collected during procedures.
- Faecal samples from specific individuals are used as a non-invasive measurement to measure stress, using cortisol as an indicator.
- As a primary reaction to a stressor, a stress response is initiated by stimulating the hypothalamic pituitary–adrenal axis. The stressor is first perceived in the brain and triggers a response by the hypothalamus, stimulating secretion of corticotrophin releasing hormone (CRH) that is mostly responsible for stimulating adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) released from the anterior pituitary gland. In vertebrates, ACTH acts on the adrenal gland to initiate an increase in glucocorticoids (GC), followed by a return to baseline
- Faecal samples can also be used to test reproduction health of rhino cows
- Only as little as 50ml of faecal matter is needed to run these tests
- Measures used to prevent rhino poaching: In-Situ Conservation Management such as monitoring and routine translocations to maintain productivity of established populations, stocking rate management and supplementary feeding in the case of severe droughts, public/private/NGO conservation partnerships
- Community conservation efforts includes sharing information with the local people close to high volume poaching areas concerning the long-term effects of poaching on the community, greater community empowerment, improved relationships to maintain a long-term support for conservation efforts
- Law enforcement and Protection; Areas such as Kruger National Park, Kwazulu-Natal parks and private owners have enhanced security measures through deploying more law enforcement staff, use of dogs and technological and aerial support. Anti-poaching units deployed across South Africa together with the South African Police Service have work together to prevent poaching operations