By Jeff Harrison - Founder - Pedaling Against Poaching
Babies - Drawing by Jeff Harrison
It is hard to believe how quickly 2021 has flown by! many miles, many smiles, and many open projects on the ground in Africa. One very important project of late is focused on Rhino Strongholds. Rhino Strongholds are areas that provide the best possible security to reduce the risk of poaching and are large enough to allow the rhino to demonstrate natural behaviours, including migration between territories and genetically diverse breeding, without the need for hands on intervention by humans.
The largest rhino population in the world, found in Kruger National Park in South Africa, has decreased by over 60% in the last ten years. Building on a decade of active rhino conservation across Africa, Helping Rhinos has a vision to reverse this trend and ensure a safe and reproductive future for rhino by creating 'Rhino Strongholds'.
Continuing to work predominantly in Africa, the goal is to expand wild spaces by working with local communities to restore degraded land and create wildlife corridors.
Local communities will be integral to the success of Rhino Strongholds, which will provide employment opportunities and engage local people in wildlife conservation through education programmes and initiatives that improve livelihoods.
Rhino Strongholds will have a rich biodiversity and a healthy ecosystem that benefits a wide variety of both fauna and flora species. The areas will have scope to increase in size through the restoration of degraded habitat and the dropping of fences between already established wildlife areas. Updates for this project can be found on the helpingrhinos.org website.
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