For the love of our Rhino

Rhino calf at &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve

Rhino calf at &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve (© &Beyond)

In the first ever private game reserve donation of rhino to another country, luxury experiential travel company &Beyond safely translocated six white rhino from &Beyond Phinda Private Game Reserve in South Africa to Botswana’s Okavango Delta in March 2013. Facilitated in partnership with RHINO FORCE, this conservation coup has been generously funded by lead sponsor, Motorite Administrators.

‘In 2012 alone, South Africa lost a devastating 668 rhino to illegal poaching, which is a 49% increase from the previous year’s figure of 448. Botswana has an excellent security system in place to protect these endangered animals and will be a safe haven for the six relocated rhino. Translocations are fundamental to secure the ongoing survival of endangered species and this groundbreaking project led by &Beyond’s experienced conservation team aims to increase Africa’s dwindling rhino populations for future generations to enjoy,’ says Joss Kent, &Beyond CEO.

The Okavango Delta has proven to be a successful rhino relocation habitat and Botswana has a strong security and monitoring framework in place whereby the military helps to protect the species. ‘It’s the ideal opportunity for us to move our eggs out of one basket,’ explains &Beyond Conservation Manager, Les Carlisle. ‘The project has the full support of the Botswana Rhino Management Committee and we are thrilled to be driving such a vital initiative for rhino conservation in partnership with Motorite.’

After years of negotiation and planning, the translocation process has been successful. Game scouts from Botswana have undergone intensive tracking and monitoring training at &Beyond Phinda. The movement and behaviour of the six rhino will be closely monitored using satellite collars and telemetry and tracking equipment. A portion of this equipment as well as anti-poaching uniforms and binoculars have been supplied by the Chipembere Rhino Foundation.

 

&Beyond has made a significant contribution to the protection of rhino over the past 22 years. A part of this success can be attributed to their direct involvement with local communities through the Africa Foundation. This project highlights the company’s commitment to its core ethic of Care of the Land, Care of the Wildlife and Care of the People.

To follow the exciting project and ongoing translocation updates, please follow &Beyond on Facebook and Twitter or visit www.andBeyond.com to read Les’s blog, ‘Carlisle on Conservation’ (www.andBeyond.com/carlisle_on_conservation).

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