Rhino horn, from Traditional Chinese Medicine to speculative investment endangered rhino now targeted by military, organized crime to fund terrorists.
Back in 2010 when we first took an interest in curtailing rhino poaching it appeared to be a rather simple problem. Rhino horn powder is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine. The Asian Rhino was about gone. South Africa is home to around 90% of Africa’s rhino (both the endangered black rhino and the white rhino.) Poverty has increased in South Africa so hiring local poachers is easy. Organized crime worms its way into South Africa at multiple levels enabling the smuggling of rhino horn from point of poaching, across borders to Asia with relative ease.
However, today, two years later, money has driven this market of trading rhino horn to a whole new level; it’s become a totally new game. For one, almost twice the rhino are being slaughtered for their horn, making their risk of extinction that much more real. This reality drives the price for a rhino horn up, purely a matter of supply and demand with the threat of a rapidly dwindling supply.
There are new players in the field, more powerful, more formidable, these are the military trained and equipped poachers combined with the notorious syndicates who buy who and what ever serves their illegal purposes. Some have gone so far as to claim that wildlife trafficking funds terrorist groups.
Then there’s the demand. Although the use of wildlife body parts in Traditional Chinese Medicine remains a real threat to numerous species of endangered wildlife, there is a new market for rhino horn and animal products, the new wealthy who are buying it as an investment, a futures option!
Video provides a quick look at the latest Rhino News, from…
Rhino horn becoming the young Asian investor’s number one futures choice to learning more about the endangered Black Rhino.
Celebrities like Mark Knopfler (singer and guitarist) and Tao Ming (former NBA star) speak out for the rhino to the impact of a small children’s book by Chris Daniels titled “Bongi’s Quest”
10 Kwazulu-Natal Chiefs joining an SMS campaign against rhino poaching to life insurance for your rhino
Museum robbers jailed for stealing dead rhino horn in the UK to Vietnam-South African counter poaching agreement