Have you ever been to Africa? Did you go on safari? Did you see the “big five,” including a rhino? If you’ve answered yes to these questions, your one lucky person! Not only to have had this once in a life time experience, but you also set your eyes on an endangered species. I have yet to travel to Africa, but when I do, I hope to see all of the “big five” alive and well in their natural habitat.
The State Of South Africa’s Rhino’s
Unfortunately, spotting rhino’s in the wild may soon be a thing of the past, as the state of the rhino population in Africa is under serious threat. With poaching at an all time high, the future of Africa’s rhino’s looks bleak. The country of South Africa alone is home to just over 80% of the remaining 26.000 rhino’s left on the continent. A large number of these rhino’s live in the infamous Kruger National Park, which is one of the most popular parks to go on safari in. Unfortunately, South Africa is also the country that experiences the most rhino poaching, with 1020 rhino’s being poached and killed in 2014 alone. That’s one rhino being killed every 9 hours! Out of these kills, there were only 344 arrests made in association to poaching. If current poaching levels continue, it is predicted that the rhino will become extinct in the wild within the next 20 yrs. Can you imagine a world without rhino’s?
Why are the rhino’s being poached?
For their horns, which are worth an incredible amount of money. Can you believe that the street value for a rhino horn is estimated to be worth $65,000 a kilo [2.2 pounds]?! With a pay day like that, its easy to see why poachers want these horns so badly.
But why would someone want to buy a rhino horn? Well, it’s claimed that the horns are used for “healing properties” and “aphrodisiac” effects, both of which have absolutely no scientific basis and are mere stories and old wives tales.
But there is hope for the rhino!
A global initiative called Rhino’s Without Boarders, lead by Travels Building Change, Green Travel Media and The Great Plains Foundation have launched the campaign #JustOneRhino to help raise awareness of the state of the rhino. With the help of donations from around the world, the goal is to airlift up to 100 rhino’s from South Africa and relocate them into protected areas of Botswana.
Botswana was chosen as an appropriate relocation site for a few reasons. One, this African nation has a relatively small rhino population that they would like to see increase in size. By relocating rhino’s from South Africa, not only will their rhino population increase, but genetic diversity will introduced as well. Second, relocating the rhino from a area of high population density, and therefore, high risk of being poached, to a region where there are few rhino’s will make it more difficult for poachers to locate and kill them. Third, Botswana has virtually no poaching and for the most part, is corruption free.
How You Can Help & Win Prizes!
Over 120 travel bloggers have joined forces in this massive campaign to raise $45,000 to save #JustOneRhino. With over 20 sponsors, spanning 5 continents, and prizes totally over $30,000, you could win some pretty incredible stuff just for making a donation! Depending on how much you donate, your chances of winning increase. For example, if you donate $20 you get 10 entries; donate $30, 20 entries; $50 for 30 entries and so on.
Once you make a donation, you’ll be in the running to win one of these amazing prizes!
- 10 Day Galapagos Voyage for 1 valued at $5298 from International Expeditions
- South Africa Big Five Safari: Kruger & KwaZulu-Natal + Swag Bag for 2 people, valued at $5000 from Adventure Life
- Seven nights bed and breakfast in a Garden View suite, valued $5,187 from Cobblers Cove Hotel, Barbados
- 10 nights’ stay & wellness package for two people at Yemaya Island Hideaway and Spa on Little Corn Island, Nicaragua, valued at $5,241
- Vouchers for 2 people at Bali Jiwa Villain in Bali, Indonesia, valued at $1,000 from Secret Retreats
- (2) Vouchers for 2 people at The Scent Hotel in Koh Samui, Thailand. Total Value $3000 ($1,500 for each 2-person package) from Secret Retreats
- Vouchers for 2 people at 4 Rivers Floating Lodge, Koh Kong, Cambodia. Valued at $900 from Secret Retreats
- Vouchers for 2 people at Flower Island, Palawan, Philippines, valued at $900 from Secret Retreats
Other prizes include:
- eBag Luggage
- WeWOOD Watches
- Dinner/Brunch Cruises
- 2 nights in an Italian Villa
- 2 Tours in India
- ExOfficio Gift Certificate
- 2 nights Renaissance Asheville
- Travel Blog Success Lifetime Membership
- African Elephant Photo Pack
- HDR Timelapse Video Camera w/Lens
- Blogger Mentorship Package from Green Global Travel & more coming soon!