It is estimated that rhino poaching has increased by 5000% since 2007 thanks to the demand in Asia. There are only a handful of rhinos left in Malawi and a number have been lost to poachers. A rhino horn can fetch $100,000’s on the black market for its apparent medicinal powers. But rhino horn is actually made out of keratin, the same as our hair and finger nails and there is no proof whatsoever that it has special powers.
Last month Lilongwe Wildlife Centre vet, Dr Amanda Salb, was called upon to go and help with a project to put transmitters in the horns of five rhinos at Liwonde National Park in the South of Malawi. Fitting radio trackers will help Parks scouts and the research team track and hopefully protect the rhinos better. It was 12 exhausting days mostly tracking on foot in 40c heat…a ‘walk in the park’ for Amanda, those who know her would say she’s a pretty steely character! Here are a few photos from her time there.