Throughout most of the 20th century, the Black Rhino was the most numerous of the world’s rhino species, which at one stage could have numbered around 850,000, according to the authoritative IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Relentless hunting of the species and clearing of land for settlement and agriculture reduced numbers and by 1960 only an estimated 100,000 remained. Between 1960 and 1995, large-scale poaching caused a 98 percent collapse in numbers. By December 2010 the Black Rhino population across Africa numbered just 4,880 animals.

Black rhino’s killed in Malawi

Wire snares and traps set by poachers have killed three endangerd black rhinos, they were re-introduced twenty years ago after this specie was declared extinct in Malawi.  

The collapse of an electric solar-powered perimeter fence around a 14sq km sanctuary has created a loophole inside Liwonde National Park in the southern region. The lack of a fence allowed poachers to enter the sanctuary.

The black rhinos were reintroduced from South Africa’s Kruger National Park through the Care for the Rare wildlife species program.

Care for the Rare was an idea hatched following Malawi’s Black Rhino extinction after two of the last remaining animals were wiped out by armed poachers in Mwabvi Wildlife Reserve in 1991.

In an obituary statement following the loss of the three rhinos, Bentley Palmer, a lead member of the rhino monitoring team said the dead female together with the dead male were the original two rhinos brought back into Liwonde as part of Malawi’s Black Rhino re-introduction program. They arrived in  1993 from Kruger National Park. The first half of the twentieth century there were about 800.000 black rhino’s. Now there are less than 5000 of them alive in Southern Africa due to relentless hunting and poaching for fun and the horn.

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