No rhinos in Botswana if poaching continues: Official

By January 25, 2020Antipoaching, Conservation
China.Org | January 25, 2020

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GABORONE: Botswana has expressed fear that there will be no rhinos in the southern African country in a year or two if poaching continues unabated, a wildlife official cautioned on Friday.

Mmadi Rueben, a rhino coordinator at the department of wildlife and national parks in the ministry of environment, natural resources conversation and tourism, raised the caution on the sidelines of an anti-poaching awareness seminar in Francistown, Botswana’s second largest city.

According to Reuben, Botswana has been losing about a rhino a month to poaching in a development that has got the potential of seriously hurting Botswana’s tourism sector boosted by its magnificent flora and fauna.

“If the poaching continues at this (alarming) rate, there will be no rhinos in Botswana in a year or two, especially the black rhino,” said Rueben in an interview with Xinhua.

At least two rhinos were poached within five days in the Okavango Delta, a UNESCO World Heritage listed as one of the seven natural wonders of Africa, situated in the northwestern parts of the diamond rich nation of Botswana.

While southern white rhinos have been rescued from extinction, Rueben said black rhinos are still considered critically endangered with only around 4, 200 living in the world.

Less than 20 are found in Botswana, which is also home to the African continent’s largest elephant population, he said.

Meanwhile, Rueben said the anti-poaching forces have now placed the protection of rhinos and location of these poaching syndicates as their priority.