Rare good rhino news (from Nepal). Via WWF: Nepal celebrates year without rhino poaching: Nepal marked 2011 as a landmark year for conservation as not a single rhino in the country was lost to poaching. With record numbers of rhinos continuing to be poached globally for their horns, particularly in South Africa where 448 were killed in 2011, this announcement is welcomed news to the conservation community. (Photo © Sameer Singh / WWF Nepal)
“This is the first time in 29 years that Nepal has gone an entire year without a single poached rhino, and it’s a testament to the efforts of the Government of Nepal, WWF and many partners,” said Barney Long, Asian species expert at WWF. “We hope the new year will bring additional good news from other countries like South Africa as they continue to crack down on rhino poaching.”
The Government of Nepal, WWF and local conservation organizations marked the occasion with a celebration on Saturday in Chitwan National Park, where the majority of the country’s rhinos live. In order to continue combating poaching and illegal wildlife trade effectively, WWF also announced at the event to support the establishment of an interrogation center in Chitwan National Park through a WWF tiger initiative.
Nepal is home to around 534 greater one-horned rhinos. Considered vulnerable by the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, these rhinos number around 2,900 in Nepal and India. Their numbers continue to decline as the result of poaching and habitat loss. Greater one-horned rhinos are the most numerous of the three Asian rhino species.