Johannesburg: Rhino poaching in South Africa has declined by 33 per cent, as 394 of the animals were killed last year in comparison to the 594 in 2019, according to a report. This marked the sixth year that rhino poaching has continued to decrease in South Africa, Xinhua news agency quoted the statement issued on Monday as saying.
Minister of Forestry and Fisheries and Environmental Affairs Barbara Creecy had said that the Kruger National Park, where most of the poaching took place, experienced 1,573 such activities last year, a decrease of 21.9 per cent in comparison to the number in 2019, which was 2,014.
After 10 years of implementing various strategies to combat rhino poaching, South Africa has managed to curb the escalation of rhino losses. Creecy believed while the lockdown assisted in the reduction, security measures were the key.
"The role of rangers and security personnel who remained at their posts, and the additional steps taken by government to effectively deal with these and related offences, also played a significant role," she said.
The Minister said the department would also be implementing a proactive and integrated approach which would not distinguish between national, provincial and private parks.
"This Integrated Wildlife Zone approach prevents borders and boundaries from inhibiting planning and implementation to achieve maximum benefit," Creecy added.
According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the two African rhino species, black rhino (Endangered) and white rhino (Near Threatened), have both increased in number in recent years due to successful conservation efforts, especially in South Africa. Most of the continent's remaining rhinos are found in just four countries — South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Kenya. (IANS)