Endangered Rhinos Targeted Amid Flooding

Endangered Rhinos Targeted Amid Flooding

Flooding in the area of Assam, India has forced many animals in Kaziranga National Park to scatter and seek refuge on higher ground. The park is home to a multitude of animals, such as buffalo, hog deer, elephants, and the one-horned rhino, a species that the World Wildlife Fund has categorized as having “high risk” of extinction. Some of the animals relocated to areas where the park rangers could easily protect them. However, the rhinos fled outside the park borders and the rangers have been struggling to monitor the animals and keep them safe. As a result, park rangers have taken initiative and are in the process of using drones to monitor the condition of the endangered species.

Poachers are taking advantage of the trapped rhinos and have begun stalking and killing the animals that have been made into easy targets. Rangers are also posted on the highways around the parks and are searching vehicles for poachers to protect these animals. 

The one-horned rhino was once a species that could be found all over northern India. However, due to poaching in the early 20th century, they came very close to extinction. By 1975, there were only 600 one-horned rhinos left in the world. With the help of rigorous conservation and protection efforts, the rhino population grew to 3,555 in 2015, according to World Wildlife Fund. 

One-horned rhinos are poached mainly for their horns. Although there is no scientific proof of medical value, many Asian medicines use the horn to treat epilepsy, fevers, and strokes. Despite bans on international trade of rhino horns, the trafficking still continues. 

Rhinos escaping to high ground Source: Biju Boro/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images


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