The rhino is critically endangered
Only 20,000 remain
An ancient species of evolution, rhinos rank amongst the most endangered species on earth. Identified as an umbrella species, rhinos protect other species by maintaining diverse grasslands, reducing fire hazards, and fertilizing the soil. Rhinos have an instrumental global impact shaping the planet’s ecosystem. They serve as carbon sinks for carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, essentially a cause of global warming.
A $20 billion industry, the illegal trade of rhino horn is declared more valuable than gold, diamonds, and cocaine fetching a price tag of US$60,000 a kilogram.
A large rhino horn is valued up to $500,000. Despite the exorbitantly price, persistent myths claim it cures a variety of ailments. Ingesting rhino horn has the same restorative property as chewing your finger nails. A rhino horn is a keratin structure and has no scientific medicinal value to effectively cure any malady.
RHINOS ILLEGALLY SLAUGHTERED IN SOUTH AFRICA
In 2017, 1,028 were killed
In 2016, 1,054 were killed
In 2015, 1,175 were killed
In 2014, 1,215 were killed
In 2013, 1,004 were killed
In 2012, 668 were killed
Why Are They Killed ?
Valued for their horn, the biggest threat to rhinos is poaching. The horn is ground up and used in traditional Asian medicine and folk remedies for a range of ailments from hangovers, impotence, fevers, to cancer cures. The horn is made up of the same material that comprises human hair and nails and has no scientific curing maladies. The Asian markets put such trust in these remedies that all scientific studies have been ignored.
An endangered species is supremely desired by hunters who yearn to add the rarest of animals to their trophy collection. The winner of the trophy hunting auction pays up to $350,000 for the right to kill an endangered species.
How Are They Poached ?
Rhinos are darted, poisoned, trapped with snares, or taken down with high-powered rifles. While the animal is sometimes still alive, the horns are gouged from their face with hatchets or chainsaws. Rhinos die an agonizing, slow death from hemorrhage often while their young watch nearby.
Leading Buyers Of Rhino Horn
Asia (Hong Kong, China, Japan, Taiwan, South Korea)
Illegal Wildlife Trade, Trophy Hunting, Deforestation, Habitat Loss
1940’s 500’000 – 2010’s 20’000
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