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Rhino Return

1 min read

Updated 01 June 2022

Hwange Community Rhino Conservation Initiative
Picture of Chris McIntyre

By Chris McIntyre

Managing Director

*A version of this article originally appeared in the June 2022 Bush Telegraph newsletter. You can read our recent newsletters and sign-up to receive these in your inbox on our Bush Telegraph newsletter page.

There was an auction to name them, competitions to draw them, flags waved to welcome them, and happy tears shed when they finally arrived. The arrival in Hwange of Thuza (Strike) and Kusasa (Tomorrow) – two white rhino bulls from the Malilangwe Trust – follows years of hard work and commitment.

Like many of Africa’s national parks, Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe saw devastating rhino poaching in the 1980s and 90s. The last white rhino was killed by foreign poachers in 2007. Thanks to a wonderful initiative, which placed the local community front and centre, these white rhinos are now being reintroduced.

Welcoming these first white rhinos onto their community grazing land in May 2022, the communities willingly ceded their pastures to rhino conservation, and are now fully-fledged rhino guardians and beneficiaries. A brave band of anti-poaching rangers – the Cobras – have been trained from the local villages to guard their precious new neighbours, while children have been educated on the importance of protecting endemic wildlife through the ‘I know rhino’ scheme. Significantly, 70% of the funds raised from tourist visits to see the rhinos goes straight back to the communities.

Enjoy this heart-warming video of their arrival over a sundowner, and dream of Africa….

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