Some of you may know that at Rhino, not only do we provide cheap car hire
, but we also like to do our bit. Back in 2010 we got involved with the International Rhino Foundation (IRF) and after seeing what excellent work they do to protect the Rhino, we decided we wanted to do our bit to help. At the time we adopted all 5 of the highly endangered Sumatran Rhino's at the Way Kambas National Park. We have been working closely with the IRF ever since on new projects and fund raising schemes.
With so much going on, it is important that we continue to support the IRF so if you want to help us promote this great cause, you can see our Facebook
page, or visit the IRF direct where you can make a donation, see http://www.rhinos-irf.org/ for more information. See our full Rhino Conservation micro-site here
Here is a quick update and recent snap of one of the adopted Rhino's;
|Dear Phil and Scott,
All of us at the International Rhino Foundation would like to thank you again for your continued support of our work to protect Critically Endangered Sumatran rhinos. We thought you might be interested in hearing a little bit more about what we've accomplished so far this year with your contribution.
Fewer than 200 Sumatran rhino survive in very small and highly fragmented populations in Indonesia and Malaysia. With our major local partner, the Indonesian Rhino Foundation (YABI), the International Rhino Foundation operates a comprehensive program aimed at protecting and increasing the populations of Sumatran rhinos in Indonesia. Our multi-faceted approach includes protection of Sumatran rhinos and their habitat (through our Rhino Protection Units), research on and captive breeding of the species at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary, and outreach to local communities (including both education programs and alternative income development).
Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park (BBS) and Way Kambas National Park (WK) in Sumatra, Indonesia, are two of the three major habitats for Sumatran rhino, and are also two of the highest priority areas for other threatened megafauna, including the Sumatran tiger and Sumatran elephant. IRF and our local partner, YABI, operate 7 Rhino Protection Units in BBS and 5 Rhino Protection Units in Way Kambas. Rhino Protection Units (RPUs) monitor threatened wildlife, deactivate traps and snares, identify and apprehend illegal intruders, including poachers, and investigate crime scenes. Thanks to the Rhino Protection Units, there have been no incidences of poaching of Sumatran rhinos in Bukit Barisan and Way Kambas National Parks in Sumatra for the past 6 years.
The five Rhino Protection Units (RPUs) in Way Kambas have been working overtime planting rhino and elephant food plants in the park. This work is being carried out in an area that park authorities seized back from encroachers. In a large collaborative effort with park authorities, police, and local people, the RPUs helped remove around 500 ‘squatters’ from the park and destroyed about 300 temporary houses. Now, 100 percent of encroachers have been removed from inside the park – an unprecedented accomplishment! Our team is now helping to regenerate the land previously cleared by the encroachers by planting native plant species that will provide food for Sumatran rhinos and elephants. The Sumatran rhino population in Way Kambas appears to have grown to 33 animals and there have been signs of new rhino calves.
There are only 9 Sumatran rhinos in captivity in the world - two at the Cincinnati Zoo, one at the White Oak Conservation Center in Florida, one in Malaysia, one in Belgium, and now four at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary (SRS). The International Rhino Foundation participates in the Global Propagation and Management Board, an international group that brings all stakeholders together to manage this small and dispersed captive Sumatran rhino population at a global level. And, with our local partner, YABI, we also manage the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary.
The SRS is a 250-acre complex located within Way Kambas National Park in Sumatra, Indonesia. Its four rhinos – ‘Andalas’, ‘Rosa’, ‘Ratu’, and ‘Bina’ – are part of an intensively managed research and breeding program aimed at increasing our knowledge about the Sumatran rhino with the ultimate aim of increasing the population in the wild. At the SRS, the rhinos reside in large, open areas where they can experience a natural rainforest habitat while still receiving state-of-the-art veterinary care and nutrition.
Sumatran rhinos are difficult to breed in captivity, and we have not yet had a successful pregnancy at the SRS. Female Ratu became pregnant by young male Andalas twice in 2010, but unfortunately miscarried both pregnancies,which is not uncommon. SRS staff are using all the tools at their disposal to help ensure that Ratu will be able to bring her next pregnancy to term. Ratu and Andalas have continued to breed over the past several months, and we are hoping for another pregnancy soon. Rosa, the other young female rhino at the SRS, is also being regularly introduced to Andalas.
Thank you again for your continued support of the SRS.
International Rhino Foundation