Friday, 02 June 2023


Way Forward

The Saving Private Rhino initiative combines key focus areas for an aggressive anti-poaching campaign that includes the following:
Please note that for security purposes considerable information has been withheld.
Massive rewards for information leading to an arrest. The reward must be greater than the share the poacher would have received after splitting the spoils with his team, paying for getaway drivers and international smuggling costs, processing costs and middlemen markups.
Finance intelligence gathering, which could lead to arrests.
High-tech protection – finance and supply electronic forewarning and CCTV surveillance equipment.
Lodge staff training – maximising every staff member’s capabilities by supplying free cross-exposure and anti-poaching training and certification.
Training facility - we are starting what will be a fully accredited (with PSIRA, FGASA & SASSETA) anti-poaching and game ranger training facility. We will employ the most experienced and qualified instructors to train career students and volunteer forces, which we intend to deploy nationally, free to reserves that can't afford to protect their rhino. These 'green force' teams will be self sufficient and able to sustain themselves for extended periods of time in the bush.
Donation of equipment and resources - new or used, to game reserves that cannot afford them. This equipment will be acquired as donations through our social media and fundraising campaigns, and will include: electronic and alarm equipment, uniforms, weapons, transport, binoculars, night vision, veterinary supplies, first aid kits, handheld radios, tents, ration packs, weapons, fuel, safes, etc.
Rapid response team of multi-functional vets - deployed nationally, to train lodge staff. They will also respond to every poached rhino in their province. When not responding they will continuously train all reserves in pro and re-active anti poaching techniques and crisis management. Most vets have to deal with a poached rhino once or twice in their careers. The veterinary, rehabilitation and crime scene intelligence they will gain from responding to these crimes on a daily basis will be unparalleled within two months. They will be fully equipped with tools such as prostheses, portable X-ray machines, fast-flowing drips for hydration, high-energy feed, and portable non see-through bomas to limit stress, control predators, climate control (sun, cold winds and rain) and ensure a safe environment for our vet to operate in and that if medicated feed and water is left it does not attract other large mammals that can further injure the rhino.
They will do a full security risk analysis of every reserve and advise on: hi-tech alarm forewarn and CCTV systems, security staff screening (criminal records, credit and pre-employment polygraph screening checks). They will create a network of all the surrounding farms that can provide early warning when helicopters or suspicious vehicles are in the area. These vets will also train all the lodge staff in: intelligence gathering, suspect recognition, crime-scene forensics, armed response, tracking, basic veterinary assistance and recommended antidotes, as
Pioneering the development of specially engineered equipment - like prosthetics, mechanical cradling and deep-tissue massage machinery, as well as portable bomas, which can quickly be deployed anywhere to protect drugged and injured rhinos from hypothermia, dehydration and predators. (Vets also require protection from other dangerous game while operating.)
Awareness campaign - this battle needs to be fought across borders with “the pen and the sword” using all forms of media to convince the ignorant that rhino horn has no medicinal value. We will solicit the endorsement of Asian celebrities and leaders to rally support. Currently Aquila, several corporates and many caring individuals have generously donated equipment and limited funds to our non-profit, section 21 company. Only with a massive awareness campaign we will be able to get the sponsorship, funding and donations of equipment, expertise, funds and time, urgently required to make this ambitious solution materialise speedily.
A 24-hour control room - that can receive forewarn alarm perimeter signals, monitor remote thermal motion detecting CCTV cameras, monitor that the regular anti-poaching patrols are safe and efficient, monitor GPS trackers installed in the rhino horns, co-ordinate crisis management nationally, etc.
Track every individual rhino horn - at all times with GPS - Install Microchips and trackers in as many rhinos’ horns as possible. (Dehorning at the reserves discretion).
24-hour hotline for informants. A real-time website with the latest news, rewards and information required by the police. We plan to expose those convicted and publish pictures of suspects as a tool for lodge security staff.
Re-establish affordable insurance for rhino owners - who can secure the breeding capacity of their herds in the event of a loss. This should be easier for the reserve to reinstate once associated to us.
Deterrent signboards – Saving Private Rhino's warning signboards at reserve entrances, reflecting that the rhinos have 24 hour hi-tech electronic and armed security protecting them.
Rhino rehabilitation and educational centre - we plan to build an anti-poaching educational centre at ARC (Aquila's Animal Rescue and Conservation Centre) we intend to burn a candle for every rhino that has fallen to poachers.