Friday, 19 April 2013

Sabi Sand poisoning all rhino horns to counter rhino poaching


A key additive to the Sabi Sand treatments is an indelible pink dye which exposes the presence of smuggled horns on airport scanners worldwide and warns consumers that the ground-up product is hazardous.

Extensive rhino horn poisoning to counter poaching upsurge
April 2013. Toxic infusions are the latest weapon to counter the thriving industry of rhino poaching in the big game areas adjoining South Africa's Kruger Park.

Consumers can become very ill
Consumers of the powdered horn in Asia risk becoming seriously ill from ingesting a so-called "medicinal product" which is now contaminated with a non-lethal chemical package. The 49,500 hectare Sabi Sand Wildtuin has launched the country's first large-scale operation to toxify the horns of its rhinos, together with an indelible pink dye which exposes the illegal contraband on airport scanners worldwide.

Many world famous safari properties on the border of the Kruger National Park are engaged in a costly struggle against relentless rhino poaching. The Sabi Sand Wildtuin Association of property owners this year will spend R6.5m on security operations to intercept and head off the incursions - a budget allocation which has tripled since 2008, when the crisis first came to the fore. These defensive strategies, undertaken with the police and SA National Parks (SANParks), are facing heavily armed and highly motivated gangs.

The poachers themselves, the starting point of the criminal traffic inside and around the Kruger Park, receive a mere fraction of the R2-2.5m value of each horn from the syndicates that plan the raids and export the material. Yet the size of their pay-offs in the neighbouring low-income communities is ample enough to keep the poachers safe from being identified.

Poaching stats
Intelligence is a prime asset in the escalating conflict. For this reason the numbers of rhino located in the area are kept confidential, as are the numbers lost to date. The national statistics are harrowing enough to the future of wildlife conservation and game tourism. The first spike in the incidence of rhino poaching was in 2008, when 88 animals were lost. This year more than double that number have been butchered in only the first three months.

Lorinda Hern of the Rhino Rescue Project, who has co-developed the ectoparasitacide treatment since 2011, measuring the horns for research purposes while Brent Leo-Smith assists.

The Sabi Sand Wildtuin Association's game-changing toxification campaign is as much about sending a message to the illegal trade worldwide as it is about rendering the rhino horns inside its perimeter both worthless and hazardous as traditional medicine.
Andrew Parker, 41, CEO of the SSWA, says that compromising the product is the most effective deterrent to the illegal market.

A key additive to the Sabi Sand treatments is an indelible pink dye which exposes the presence of smuggled horns on airport scanners worldwide and warns consumers that the ground-up product is hazardous.

No comments:

Post a comment

You only need to enter your comment once! Comments will appear once they have been moderated. This is so as to stop the would-be comedian who has been spamming the comments here with inane and often offensive remarks. You know who you are!

Related Posts with Thumbnails

ShareThis