The 2nd of March 2012 marks the day on which three white rhino, one cow and two bulls, were horrifically poached at Kariega Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape. Tragically one bull was fatally wounded during the poaching and died that night, the other bull sustained a severe injury to his hind leg and died 24 days later. The cow, against all odds survived and endured a long and painful period of recovery. Today she is healthy and thriving in her role as the mother to a beautiful calf.
This video tells their story. It is not easy to watch, but it is important that you do, because four years later in 2016 poaching is still a massive problem. It is up to each of us to do what we can to bring an end to this senseless cruelty.
Rhino Thandi and her calf Thembi carry a message of hope
The bravery of the two surviving rhino was unbelievable and inspired the Kariega rangers to nickname the cow Thandi and the bull Themba, two isiXhosa names meaning courage (or to be loved) and hope. Thandi’s calf was named Thembi, the female name for hope in isiXhosa and in memory of Themba, so that she could carry the message of hope for future generations of rhino into the world.
The story of these three rhino spurred a number of people and organisations into action and joining the war against rhino poaching. It is a testament to the strength of their human spirits and the connection that they feel to all living animals and the role that we play in protecting them. But, the war on rhino rages on and these people and organisations need your help.
What can you do to help stop rhino poaching?
Please have a look at the work being done by the organisations listed below. You can help any one of them in many different ways – volunteering your time and skills, donating funds to their cause or simply spreading the word by sharing this blog and video. Thank you, every little bit helps.
- The Kariega Foundation: Save the Rhino
- Forever Wild Rhino Protection Initiative
- Saving the Survivors
Read more about the story of rhino Thandi and her calf Thembi.