A to Z of Destinations
Australia, NZ and South Pacific
A to Z of Experiences
Walking and trekking
Diving and snorkelling
Wildlife and safaris
Meet the locals
Frontier and expedition
Cycling and Mountain Biking
Visiting the Poles
Career breaks and BIG trips
Body and soul
Volunteer and conservation
Australia, East Coast
Everest Base Camp
Aurora Borealis/Northern Lights
Trans-Siberian and Trans-Mongolian railway
Climb Mount Kilimanjaro
Cruising the Nile, Egypt
11th April 2012
South Africa is considering legalising the trade of rhino horn in an attempt to save the species, a statement released from a government official has said
In a bid to combat rampant poaching, South Africa is considering approaching the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) with a proposal to trade rhino horn internationally. Although the internal preparatory processes are in their infancy, South Africa is already preparing to discuss the idea at the 16th Conference of Parties, said the state's minister of water and environmental affairs Edna Molewa.
Despite the millions ploughed into anti-poaching methods, the rate of poaching is still high; 159 rhinos were reportedly killed in the first three months of 2012. The rising deaths have called for a revision of how rhino populations are conserved.
At present, rhino horns can be exported from South Africa as a hunting trophy but the bid could expand the rights to trade internationally.
If the legalisation was approved by CITES, old horn stockpiles could be sold to further fund species conservation and horn 'harvesting' in farms would hopefully help take the pressure off wild populations. All traded horns would be micro-chipped and DNA samples collected to stop illegally attained horns entering the market.
However, the idea has been met by some opposition. “The recent string of high-profile arrests shows that people within the private game farming industry are involved in poaching. The issue is, therefore, a little more complicated than simply legalising the trade in rhino horn. For example, it would allow poachers to launder illegally gotten rhino horns,” said WWF South Africa’s chief executive Morné du Plessis.
In the government's statement, the minister announced that 90 poachers have been arrested since January 2012 and 150 new rangers, currently undergoing paramilitary training, are to be deployed to Kruger National Park.
South Africa is home to the world's largest population of rhinos and consequently, is a hotspot for poaching. From South Africa, poached horns find their way to South-East Asian countries where they are used to supposedly cure an array of maladies.
What do you think about legalising the trade of rhino horns and rhino farms? Is it cruel to harvest the species for their horn? Or do you think that current conservation efforts aren't working and something else needs to be tried?
Check out Mark Carwardine's ultimate guide to planning a wildlife experience | Shop... More
Javan rhino declared extinct in Vietnam | News... More
Take a peek at our ultimate African safari guide | Destinations... More
More troops deployed to tackle rhino poaching | News... More
Rhino horns stolen from European museums | News... More
You must be logged in to leave a comment. Login or get more from Wanderlust - register today!
Wildlife and safaris travel guide, including wildlife and safaris travel advice, where to go on safari in the world
South Africa travel guide, including map of South Africa, top South Africa travel experiences, tips for travel in South Africa, plus where to see whales and wil
Leopards, elephants, birdlife in abundance – Sri Lanka is a wildlife lover's paradise. Here's what you'll find in each national park...
Fancy spotting whales in the wild? Wanderlust readers share their incredible whale-watching stories...
The mountains of Ethiopia are home to an abundance of special creatures – and a new lodge is providing the perfect base to seek one of the rarest, the Ethiopian wolf...
The Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre opened to the public in January 2014 and has since been visited by Sir David Attenborough
Key states along the illegal ivory trade route have committed to a series of measures designed to protect Africa's 'vulnerable' elephant populations
Thousands of migrating wildebeest have returned to Kenya, from the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania, months earlier than expected
Simply select the destination you’re interested in or the activities you’re looking
for and we’ll send your request to a select panel of tour operators.
Each operator will respond to your request individually. Your details remain private
and are not disclosed to any partners unless you decide to proceed with a booking.
Save up to £600 per couple on a holiday of a lifetime to Costa Rica with Llama Travel
10% OFF at Powertraveller
Save up to £600 per couple on an adventure of a lifetime to Machu Picchu and Peru with Llama Travel
Wanderlust sends out regular email newsletters – be the first to know about web
exclusives, competitions, hot offers and travel jobs. Register today!
I have read and agree to the Terms &
Where in the world are you? Add
#wanderlustmag to your tweets and share your latest travel adventures with
fellow Wanderlusters on wanderlust.co.uk
Get to know Wanderlust on facebook and bring all your travel-minded friends, too