This is Shadow. An eight week old rhino calf whose mother was killed by poachers for her horn. She was found in Kruger National Park in South Africa, looking for shelter and safety. She is one of many rhino calves that the poachers, and ultimately the illegal wildlife trade kingpins, leave as a by-product of the rampant killing.
Her story is incredibly sad, but not uncommon. Care For Wild, a wildlife rehabilitation centre in South Africa is caring for her in and she is doing well. I am proud to say that I worked there this summer and to see another calf come in just weeks after two others became orphans is heartbreaking. Working with rhinos everyday was an incredible experience and I saw how each and everyone was scarred, physically and emotionally, from living through their mothers poaching. It is hard to describe the poaching crisis and separate myself from the emotional suffering of these rhinos, because it truly is a criss of epic proportions. My time there was invaluable but there is so much more work to do. Without the dedication of these people, Shadow would not have made it.
The rhinoceros will not make it without us.
769 rhinos have been poached as of 10th September 2014.
World Rhino Day is on the 22nd of September