On World Rhino Day today, the Black Rhino Range Expansion Project celebrates the birth of at least 13 calves in 2020 on project sites across South Africa and in Malawi. Two of the calves are second generation, meaning that their grandmothers were among those moved to create new populations.
“This is why WWF entered into partnership with Ezemvelo KZN Wildlife nearly two decades ago,” says WWF’s project leader Dr Jacques Flamand. “It’s what we’re about. We decided to increase the range of black rhino in order to increase growth rate and numbers of the critically endangered species. It started slowly and has taken a lot of hard work and commitment from a lot of partners. Now we are starting to see the results that we hoped for.”
There are now approximately 270 black rhinos on the project’s 13 partner sites.
There are about 5 500 black rhinos in the wild, an increase from less than 2 500 around 25 years ago. Translocation projects that create new populations in well-protected areas are essential in giving populations a chance for recovery.
#WorldRhinoDay news! 🦏☀️
13 new calves in 2020. A total of 270 black rhinos across 13 sites. And our first cross-border population in Malawi is doing well.
Our work to grow the numbers of critically endangered black rhino is seeing the results we hoped for. Learn more:
— WWF South Africa (@WWFSouthAfrica) September 22, 2020