Rhinos in Africa, Colin Bell

On 29th of May 2014, Colin Bell gave us some insights about Rhinos in Africa. Let us provide the news upfront – Rhinos are about to be extinct – soon, very soon.

Colin landed his first job as a safari guide in Botswana in 1977. In those days, Botswana had rhino – but by the mid-80s the last rhino in the wilds had been poached out. In 1983 he co-founded Wilderness Safaris which grew to manage camps and lodges across seven African countries. In 2001 he was privileged to be able to reintroduce rhino back into the Okavango Delta where they have thrived ever since.

Providing some facts, in 1900 Africa had some 500.000 rhinos, and numbers are down to 25.000. Rhino poaching is a major and exponential threat taking place especially in South Africa, i.e. from 9 reported cases in year 2000 to over 1000 reported cases in 2013. Colin predicts that rhinos will be extinct between 2020 and 2024, if no major actions are being taken now. As opposed to targeting the poacher he recommends stronger action against the traders and controllers. Overall, a very awakening evening. Thank you very much for that.

Carole Armstrong-Hooper, Rotarian




Club News