All five rhino species are threatened with extinction: Africa’s black rhinos are critically endangered, with a population under 5,000. The 3,000 one-horned rhinos of India and Nepal are endangered, while Southeast Asia’s Sumatran and Javan rhinos number only in the hundreds and tens, respectively and are also critically endangered. At around 20,000, the southern white rhino is most numerous, with the vast majority living in South Africa.
Although habitat loss is an important consideration, the main threat to rhinos is poaching. Rhino horn is a highly valued component of Traditional Chinese Medicine, practiced in China, Vietnam and other parts of East Asia. Hundreds of rhinos are killed illegally for their horns every year.
HSI is working to improve international and domestic laws and regulations, to increase enforcement of existing protective measures, and to convince consumers of Traditional Chinese Medicine that the use of rhino horn is ineffective and unnecessary and is threatening the survival of these fascinating animals.
October 3, 2016
CITES News: Rhinos saved from disastrous Swaziland proposal to legalise horn trade on same day African elephants lose out on CITES Appendix I protection
HSI applauded CITES Parties for defeating a proposal by Swaziland to sell existing stocks of rhinoceros horn and horn harvested from the 74 living rhinos in the country to licensed retailers in Asia. The rhino news followed a devastatingly disappointing decision to reject the up-listing of all African elephants to Appendix I despite a clear conservation need.
September 22, 2016
Just in time for World Rhino Day, HSI and 27 leading wildlife organisations sent an urgent appeal to the King of Swaziland, asking him to withdraw a proposal to legalize the international trade in rhino horn, warning that demand across Asia for rhino horn is driving the species towards extinction.
September 19, 2016
Ahead of CITES wildlife trade conference, HSI warns leaders “it’s do or die” for iconic elephants, rhinos, lions, pangolins, sharks, rays, and many other wild plants and animals
Wildlife experts at Humane Society International warned that decisions taken at the upcoming CITES international wildlife trade meeting could be ‘do or die’ for some of the world’s most iconic and threatened wild species such as African elephant, rhinos and pangolins.
August 18, 2016
HSI/Europe applauded the French Environment Minister Ségolène Royal for signing a decree banning the trade in ivory and rhino horn in France and all overseas French territories. This follows an earlier French governmental move to suspend re-exports of elephant ivory.