Thick brush, no trails, night vision goggles and powerful guns, enter poachers and rangers in the fight for the rhino.
This past weekend my husband Russ and I spent several hours hiking in a rather remote Texas State Park. The cedar and scrub oak were dense as we made our way along the trail.
This got me thinking. Here we are walking in broad daylight and we can barely see the startled deer or the small birds twittering in the brush. What a challenge Peter, his team, and other anti-poaching rangers have! Here they are, usually at night with the task to not only find the rhino but the poachers, stealing closer on the ground or in the air to kill and plunder.
Add to this, they are not only doing everything they can to hear and see the enemy, but are at risk for finding themselves in the cross-hairs. Plus, they do this night after night. They are the FBI for wildlife. Gathering intel, following leads, spending much time waiting and watching and then running and rushing with adrenal pumping in pursuit. Not to mention the violation to all the senses when coming upon a rhino poaching scene.
Yes, peacefully hiking through the dense vegetation and majesty of nature in Texas somehow opened a glimpse of the similar, yet totally different experience anti-poaching rangers have as they employ all their skills and energy, matched only by their dedication and courage as they enter the war zone, the bushveld in South Africa where the rhinos roam in peril.
Thank you to all of you warriors on the ground, the anti-poaching rangers, the rhinos’ hope for survival.