Archives for April2015

Thandi’s Calf: The Rhino That Should Never Have Been Born

Rhinos were once found throughout Euroasia and Africa but their numbers have dropped dramatically due to human activities. Today very few rhinos survive outside protected areas.  In recent years rhino numbers have dropped dramatically due to poaching for their horn which is prized in Asian countries. They also face threats from habitat loss and political conflict.

In Africa, Southern white rhinos, once thought to be extinct, live in protected sanctuaries and are classified as Near Threatened. But the Northern white rhino subspecies is believed to be extinct in the wild and only a few captive individuals remain in a sanctuary in Kenya. They are critically endangered. Black rhinos have doubled in number over the past two decades from their low point of 2,480 individuals, but total numbers are still a fraction of the estimated 100,000 that existed in the early part of the 20th century.

An uplifting story involves a rhino called Thandi, who three years after surviving a brutal poaching attack that left two male rhinos dead,  gave birth to a calf on 13 January 2015 at Kariega Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape, South Africa. With footage of Thandi and her calf captured moments after the birth, this film by photographer and filmmaker Adrian Steirn documents Thandi’s journey from attack to recovery. This the moving story of the rhino that should never have been born.


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