Victims to Victors – Injured and Traumatised Rhinos
HESC’s expertise lies in their team of dedicated curators, veterinarians and specialists from Onderstepoort (University of Pretoria), earned on the back of years of actual practice in the field.
Despite the challenge of rehabilitating the rhino (we know very little about optimal treatment in rhino, and the sheer size and complexity of their physiology and how they respond to drugs has been a barrier to success for many similar institutions), HESC now has enough experience under their belts to continue with other similar cases of rehabilitation. They have also learned that regardless of how hopeless a particular surviving rhino may seem, there is always the chance of survival. The treatment of such rhinos is a long-term one, and comes at a massive cost.
“These facilities can serve a very important function in the current climate where heavy poaching of animals such as rhinos are common, especially in Mpumalanga and Limpopo. Significant and beneficial scientific info can be generated by treating and monitoring these injured animals over an extended period of time to gain a better understanding of how to manage and treat them in the long term. One also obtains valuable info on other aspects of the animals e.g. anatomy, histology and physiological parameters. This is obviously advantageous to the survival of the species, not only with the respect to the White and Black rhino in Southern Africa, but also the extremely endangered rhino species on the Indian subcontinent where the principles that was learned from our rhino, can then be applied to animals on other continents.” – Johan Marais