Poachers haven’t gotten the message about how killing off an entire species is bad, so conservationists have had to come up with new and different methods to keep them at bay. The new plan brings a little technology into the mix by embedding cameras into the rhinos’ horns.
This may sound like a pretty drastic measure, but rhino numbers are dwindling. There’s only 25,000 African rhinos left in the world and a staggering 61 living Javan Rhinoceroses. Add that to the fact that there’s been a 9,000% increase in poaching since 2007 and something has to be done.
Paul O’Donoghue, a researcher on Project RAPID, the group pushing this new initiative said:
“With this device the heart-rate monitor triggers the alarm the instant a poaching event occurs, pin-pointing the location within a few metres so that rangers can be on the scene via helicopter or truck within minutes, leaving poachers no time to harvest the valuable parts of an animal or make good an escape. You can’t outrun a helicopter. RAPID renders poaching a pointless exercise.”
Personally, it sounds like too little too late. It only helps them catch the poachers, not save the animal before it gets poached. Now, if you could attach a laser that would only be triggered by the proximity of humans to their horns, you just might have something.