When one compares a map of the current distribution of the five rhino species with one showing the distribution c.1800, the difference is striking. Many countries have lost their rhino populations altogether: Burkina Faso, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Chad, Central African Republic, Sudan in Africa; and Pakistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Sarawak in Asia.
The most obvious reason for the decline from around a million rhinos in the year 1800 to approximately 30,000 today is poaching, but habitat loss has also been a key factor. There are several ways in which this is manifested:
- Clearance of land for human settlement and agricultural production
- Logging, authorised and illegal
Links and articles
- In a recent article on black rhino conservation, Dr. Jacques Flamand, an internationally respected wildlife veterinarian and the head of the World Wildlife Fund’s Black Rhino Range Expansion Project, cites habitat loss as playing a large part in the decline of black rhinos in Africa. Read 'Conservation Project Saves Endangered Black Rhinos', by Darren Taylor, Voices of America