The first order of business is to thank all of you who contributed to GoPro’s matching campaign for Rhinos Without Borders. With your help we raised enough to move two more rhinos! It was an incredible effort on your part and we are grateful for your support.
The Latest News from the Field
We are also happy to share with you our latest updates from Poster, Sven and the Rhino Monitoring team who spend every day out it in the bush keeping track of the rhinos. What you will read today are the details from Sven out in the field, following rhinos, keeping track of these precious animals that you have all helped us so generously with. It is our collective responsibility and pleasure, to play host to and protect these new imports to Botswana. They must be the only ones to be given Botswana citizenship ‘on arrival.’
What you will see in Sven’s report is that we are tracking a majority of the rhinos, and tactically we are choosing rhinos to follow. Some are in regular contact with tourism operators and we get feedback from them but we have chosen the hardest most remote of the herd to spend the most time with (mitigating the risk). In September, 13 individual rhinos were observed in the field. Between two monitoring Land Cruisers, one boat and a Cessna 182, the team completed a combined total of 161 hours of patrols in September.
As Sven and Poster and the team continue their work, we have managed to assemble the next batch of rhinos to move and those now await (under lock and key) a break in the hot weather. Last November’s move was sheer hell (in 40°C (105°F) degree temperatures!) and we have decided to move in the cooler months between April and September as we go forward. This season does coincide with the Okavango floods so anticipate some fun and games!
I am incredibly proud of the Rhino Monitors and the way they are working closely with all stakeholders, from the Botswana Defense Force, Wildlife Department Anti-Poaching unit, Police, and Directorate of Internal Security, as well as other tourism partners who have introduced their own rhinos. I see Poster and his team as rhino monitors but also Rhino Ambassadors. As are you all.
Dereck Joubert – CEO
Great Plains Conservation/Great Plains Foundation