Rhino Horn Use: Fact vs. Fiction

All five of the world’s diverse species of rhinoceros have been brought to the edge of extinction because of human appetite for their distinctive horns. The horns have been prized for tens of centuries for their beautiful translucent color when carved, and their supposed healing properties.

In the Middle Eastern country of Yemen, the horn continues to be coveted by Muslim men, although imports were banned in 1982. The material, whose luster increases with age, is used for the handles of curved daggers called “jambiya,” which are presented to Yemeni boys at age 12. Jambiya are considered a sign of manhood and devotion to the Muslim religion, and are used for personal defense. Yemeni men place great value on the dagger handles, which are commonly studded with jewels. In China, the ornamental use of rhino horn dates back to at least the 7th century AD. Over the centuries, rhino horns have been carved into ceremonial cups, as well as buttons, belt buckles, hair pins, and paperweights.

Far more pervasive, however, is their use in the traditional medicine systems of many Asian countries, from Malaysia and South Korea to India and China, to cure a variety of ailments. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the horn, which is shaved or ground into a powder and dissolved in boiling water, is used to treat fever, rheumatism, gout, and other disorders. According to the 16th century Chinese pharmacist Li Shi Chen, the horn could also cure snakebites, hallucinations, typhoid, headaches, carbuncles, vomiting, food poisoning, and “devil possession.” (However, it is not, as commonly believed, prescribed as an aphrodisiac).

Historical mentions of other uses for the horns date back thousands of years. In Greek mythology, they were said to possess the ability to purify water. The ancient Persians of the 5th century BC thought that vessels carved from the horn could be used to detect poisoned liquids, causing bubbles in the presence of some poisons — a belief that persisted into the 18th and 19th centuries among the royal courts of Europe.

In Yemen, the rhino horn is used for the handles of curved daggers called jambiya.

Now, science is now stepping in to dispel some of the mystery and fiction surrounding the use of rhino horn.

It is believed that there may be some truth behind the rhino horn’s ability to detect poisons which is linked to the composition of the horn. Rhino horns are composed largely of the protein keratin, also the chief component in hair, fingernails, and animal hooves. Many poisons are strongly alkaline (or basic), and may have reacted chemically with the keratin.

Unlike the horns of most animals, which have a bony core covered by a relatively thin layer of keratin, rhino horns are keratin all the way through — although the precise chemical composition of the keratin will vary depending on a rhino’s diet and geographic location. This fact has allowed ecologist Raj Amin of the Zoological Society of London and his colleagues to take “fingerprints” of horn samples and determine the animal populations they came from, which has helped law enforcement officials target and crack down on poaching.

Rhino horns are not, as once believed, made simply from a clump of compressed or modified hair. Recent studies by researchers at Ohio University using computerized tomography (CT) scans, have shown that the horns are, in fact, similar in structure to horses’ hooves, turtle beaks, and cockatoo bills. The studies also revealed that the centers of the horns have dense mineral deposits of calcium and melanin — a finding that may explain the curve and sharp tip of the horns. The calcium would strengthen the horn while the melanin would protect the core from being degraded by ultraviolet radiation from the sun. As the softer outer portion was worn away over time by the sun and typical rhino activities (bashing horns with other animals, or rubbing it on the ground), the inner core would be sharpened into a point (much like a wooden pencil).

Overall there isn’t much evidence to support the plethora of claims about the healing properties of the horns. In 1990, researchers at Chinese University in Hong Kong found that large doses of rhino horn extract could slightly lower fever in rats (as could extracts from Saiga antelope and water buffalo horn), but the concentration of horn given by a traditional Chinese medicine specialist are many many times lower than used in those experiments. In short, says Amin, you’d do just as well chewing on your fingernails.

  • G Yeck

    Great article; thank you. I’m doing some research on African rhino conservation, and looking at the impact of the TCM market on African rhino populations. Would love to see a follow-up article: is the latest science — denying the medicinal value of rhino horn — having any impact at all on China’s (and East Asia’s) demand for the horn? Many thanks.

  • smw

    Thank you for publicising this often misunderstood topic. I too would love a follow-up article please on 1.whether education is reducing the use of horn in Asian potions, and 2.whether highly desirable substitues for rhino horn jambiya are being marketed?

  • David

    So I cant just hammer my hair into a horn? I have to put a bone in it before hand? Bummer.

  • sanjog pradhan

    hey thanks for the informative suggestion

  • b,copeland

    Keep my nose out of your business!

  • Mostafa Ahemd Zaky

    thank you for your wonderful article it has a very good and precious information but i want to correct one thing thant the uses of Rhino Horn in Yamen to adorn the dagger (Gambia) hand is related to traditional and culture not to Muslims Men or Islam sa you mentioned . on contrary Islam as religion order us to show mercy teward all creaturs and what enhance my claim that we here in egypt are Muslim and dont deal with rhino horn . and in Yemen Christian men also have this Gambya dagger . and thank you anther time for ur precious information



  • amos tsopotsa

    well its quite a myth either to protect them from poaching,so why are they so expensive in the black market,as well as when governments sell them.i heard each horn could cost upto $USD50 000,someone is not telling the truth here,i hear there is some brown powder or liquid inside that they use in the manufacturing of drugs,mostly cocaine.am not sure about that,but it could be the reason why its so expensive.thanx for your article keep it up.

  • PB Ruthven

    It is horrific that a syndicate, apparently headed by the son of a prominent SA mining magnate, as well as veterinarians and helicopter pilots, are behind the current high level of rhino poaching going on in South Africa. What can we do to diminish the demand for rhino horn? I think it is time to inform all governments that there are just no medicinal properties in rhino horn, it is a sick and outdated myth, Two days ago another cow was brutally murdered and her calf left to run around in agony for many hours. This is so sad, so repulsive that words cannot explain. For how long are we going to let these atrocities continue and the innocent suffer? Where is our morality and ethical laws that we are suppose to live by?

  • Joshua White

    Wonderful article. Keep it up!

  • Felix

    They have now slaughtered the last rhino of South Africa, letting it bleed to death.

    TCM peddlers and practicioners need to be punished, severely. Go locate your nearest TCM practitioner and tell him in no uncertain terms what you think of him and his fraudulent, cruel business. Each and every TCM proponent legitimises and provides cover for the poachers. No, I don’t care if this or that one doesn’t use endangered species parts. By setting up his office, he has announced that it’s ok to make substances that have no evidence of being effective or working the way claimed by the seller simply for anecdotal, superstitious and unfounded reasons. It needs to stop, along with all the other superstitious crap that’s exploiting the gullible and harming the world.

  • denise stafforrd

    My stepfather’s life was saved from the ravages of terminal brain cancer by the medical marvel which is crushed horn of the black rhino. Since that event, my brother who works overseas in the oilfields has managed to incrementaly smuggle in 150 lbs of this medicine so our family now has a substantial stash which brings us much comfort. Our uncle’s empheysema, which was considered in end stage, has disappeared after treatment with crushed black rhino horn so we’re now firm believers.
    One problem is that zoo raised animals don’t posess the proper chemistry for healing qualities. Only rhinos taken in the wild have horns which are viable, so beware when you buy!

  • Hans Ruysenaar

    I have to wonder what kind of CRETIN would actually boast that they have been personally responsible for the smuggling of 150 pounds … that would account for perhaps FIFTEEN RHINO DEAD … so that your family has a stash.
    I personally would not be much aggrieved if families such as yours bid a hasty farewell to this mortal coil but unfortunately that will not help the survival of the magnificent Rhinocerous.

  • John Allen

    Surely it must be possible to teach the orientals to chew their own fingernails & grind toenail clippings. Hard to believe that with all their technological prowess they still have this misplaced faith in mumbo-jumbo. Regarding Denise’s stash of horn: I fully endorse Hans’ sentiments. May they buy some poisoned horn in the future.

  • Kiki

    I think God made a mistake by creating man. I don’t think we are the crown of His creation, the animals and nature are! We only distroy everything. I don’t believe that the rhino horn can really cure all the ailments they are talking about. At the end of the day, it’s all about money, just like everything alot of humans live for. Thanks to all of you guys that really try to make a difference. And the rhino killers, you will one day have to explain to your Creator why you destroyed a magnificent animal in the name of MONEY!!!!

  • Molly

    We entrust the safety of our national heritage in the hands of our vets and conservationists, these people have now abuse this trust and acted as if they have no answering to do. I think that there should be serious steps taken in the management of wildlife and the people involved in this field, and although the majority of conservationists do have a calling and respects their position as care takers of what belongs to all of us, there are those few that works under the cover of “conservation” to line their own pockets, and have no respect what so ever for conservation. These animals belong to ALL of us to enjoy, not to a chosen few to destroy as they wish.

  • Brett Parrish

    Very informative article.
    I am currently studying to become a field guide in South Africa and I find this poaching spree very upsetting. These are wonderfull animals and if more people could see them in the wild they would realise just how special they are.
    I wish the world would wake to the fact that Rhino horn is only of use to the Rhino.

  • Anne

    I must totally agree with Hans Ruysenaar. I was horrified to read what denise wrote. You should be ashamed of yourself!! Its people like you who are responsible for the demise of innocent animals for you own greed. What goes around comes around.

  • Bernie

    Denise you are an idiot. The power of the human mind is astounding. Rhino horn is a placebo. You and your family would probably believe me if i told you that eating your own feces cured cancer. And because you believe it, it would. Your “stash” is ridiculous and i hope you die.

  • Indiana Jones

    The article is informative and interesting but unfortunately it will not stop the likes of Denise Stafford or any of the other idiots that having been living in a cave for most of their lives.

    Maybe we should inform the world that the Stafford genitals have amazing powers and watch in amazement, firstly at the idiots that believe it and secondly, at the Staffords begging for their lives to save their prized genitalia.

    Any person that is responsible for the buying or selling of rhino horn is just as guilty as the rhino murderers themselves.


    Ive heard through the grapevine that a whole lot of poison laced rhino horn is going to come onto the market fairly soon.–could be quite interesting!!!!!

  • Sue Elias

    Denise where do you live? On this planet? In a hole in the desert? I’d really like to visit you where ever you are. I want to look you in the eye, show you photos of our rhinos dying horrible deaths because of people like you and make you eat your own finger and toenails. It’s the same.

  • Chelsea

    Whoah Felix lay off the TCM practitioners! In case you forgot, you live in the United States where the use of Rhino horn is strictly illegal. Also, if you run into a TCM practitioner in America, that practitioner was educated in a much more westernized system that lays to rest many of the Chinese medical myths that don’t have scientific backing. I think illegal rhino poaching is absolutely unforgivable, and I am a student of TCM at Five Branches University in California. My school does not use wild animal products, and I doubt that you will find many American TCM clinics that do. Might I also note that even in China the use of rhino horn in medicine is rarely used. Most of the poaching of these incredible animals is “trophy” pouching. Don’t attack the TCM practitioners, attack to poachers and poachers that promote this crime.

  • Deon Swart Wildlife admin specialist

    No 1 Rule in life – Respect one another. When I reed the some of your comments – I pick up disrespect – and that clouds any good debate.

    I have 30 years experience in conservation in South Africa – from ranger level up to directorship. Here in South Africa is an abundance of white rhino – also privately owned not in protected areas. White rhino is not even listed as a CITES 1 species in South Africa. The CITES ban on legal trade of horn created a sustainable black market in illegal horn. The ban also secure a high black market price, because it is not available on the open – legal market. Who benefits the most out of the current CITES ban?

    We have to respect the values and traditiions of all people – and if they believe in the medicinal value of a horn – respect them for that. We as western people have a lot of values that differ from the eastern – but I never read in any blog or chat room that they crisize us for it??

    The solution – legal rhino horn should be available as an alternative to horns generated from unknown or poached sources.

  • charlemagne

    Heard biologists have devised techniques to include substances in rhino horns that be be extremely nocive to consumers of he powdered horn (without meaningfully damaging the rhino). The risk of acquiring bone diseaeses and tumors should reduce significantly the appeal to users of Chinese medicine and Australian top models to consume rhino products.

  • xevil

    what is the value of rhino horn.i have a piese of it which is about 250 gms.
    does it make any sense.

  • Hendrik

    I think I need to manufacture a synthetic horn from e.g. a keratin polymer, then gring it up and sell it to these merchants. If I can sell cheap keratin at the price or Rhino horn powder, I might be a millionaire in a year’s time. Plus I will have saved hundreds of Rhinos from an ugly death !!!

  • juman allamnso

    I too have had incurable disease cured by sacred horn of rhino. My father was dying of hepatitis and recieved powdered rhino horn in a liquid and was cured within 7 days. My brothers wife was in her deathbed and dom nearly die when she too was cured by crushed rhino horn. A priest in my church took rhino horn for his blindness in one eye and was able to see again. Rhino horn has magic powers and is a cure all for every affliction. Allah has granted Rhino to the peoples of the lands they inhabit as a gift for health and prosperity. Rhinos must be bred for their magical horns and have them remove without killing dem. But Rhino is a mystery cure .

  • John Coetzee

    Reading Denise’s and Juman’s absolute bilge makes me sick. How on earth can people believe in such hogwash in this day and age? Rhino horn, crushed or otherwise, is and will always be like hair, fingernails and toenails. So why don’t you use your own clippings instead? Get real, will you!

  • Prince Mbuyiswa

    I’m a South African,and strongly feel it is wrong for the Orient people in the East to come kill our Southern African Animals for their simple gains,…they can come take all material things we have here but not our Animals as that’s all we have to live with and to showto the world,our pride….

  • xevil

    hey guys do you know any museum related to rhino horn or other ancient traditions. I have a pot made of rhino horn used in worship in memories of the dead ones.it is rare and looks as ancient item to keep as in museum.
    if you can please help me.

  • Selena

    I wan to buy some Rhino horn, leg or arm uif u guy have please email me at selena@aol.com

  • Eric

    I have heard rumors of rhino horn poisoning as well. It seems that game control rangers tranquilize native rhino and introduce a very potent type of poison into the horn material, possibly Polonium 210. Polonium 210 can cause leukemia in very small doses. Please be very careful if you are buying or using rhino horn and make sure to ask if your horn has been tested. The recent rash of leukemia deaths in southern china is potentially linked to rhino horn use, I have heard.

  • Melena

    Selena why don’t you and get it yourself. You just think this is very funny matter? Don’t you? Wait until your loved one dies in your family and people want their body parts to buy, let’s see how funny that would be. You just like playing on people’s emotion because you know this is not funny. Let’s see if you smirk when you see your loved dying right in front of you. Remember my words and then laugh!

  • tonyh

    It is a misnomer that a rhino has to die in order to have it’s horn trimmed…many game professionals trim the horns of rhinos done to a measurable length above the base. This is done to stop rhinos doing damage to other game. It is done under aneastetic and the animal suffers no ill consequences at all.

    Having said that, I see nothing wrong with horns trimmed in such a fashion being used as a source of revenue for the upkeep and promotion of proper conservation…as long as it is properly regulated. If the trade was done above board and through approved sources only, why shouldn’t countries like south africa benefit from the profits generated?

    People have no objection to the selling of exotic meats like warthog or impala…here the animal actually DIES. So, why should we get on a moral high horse about the trade of rhino horns.

    Obviously, I don’t approve of the illegal poaching trade where the rhino’s are killed. But, come on, culling is a reality…game parks simply cannot support beyond certain numbers of animals without detrimental effects (the same source as impala meat and warthog meat). So, if an animal has to die…why should the game park not benefit in some way to help conserve and care for other animals in their care?

    Just something to think about…south africa has a nearly 70 percent unemployment rate. The government does not have enough money to care for the population that lives below the poverty line, which is why poaching occurs in the first place. Why not regulate the rhino horn trade and pump the funds back into feeding families of poachers so they don’t have to poach? And that’s the truth.

  • tonyh

    Besides…to all the ridiculous comments about “the last rhino in south africa”…there are plenty of rhino in south african game reserves…it may be an endangered species, but it is by no means extinct, so stop being ridiculous.

  • tonyh

    To Prince Mbuyiswa…it’s not people from the east coming to south africa and hunting our rhinos, it’s local people killing them and selling their horns overseas. Your statement was rather ignorant and stings of xenophobia. Besides, if you truly are south african, you know that we are a developed nation that has a lot going for it technologically…animals are not all we have “our pride”. While our game does make us a tourist destination for the international community, don’t reduce us to “the wild”. Also realise that game parks are limited as far as space and resources are concerned. If we didn’t cull or regulate populations ourselves, parks would be overrun and cease to work at an ecological level….can you imagine keeping 300 cows on a 50m by 50m piece of land? You couldn’t … There isn’t enough grazing land for all of them to survive. Parks, also, have limited borders…meaning they can only care for a limited number of animals…hence culling.

    And if animals have to die, why should parks be limited by law from making some money off those animals in order to better care for others?

  • dux

    i have a rhino horn contact me on lesego45@gmail.com

  • Renee

    Pardon my ignorance, but is it possible that Keratin is taken from Rhino horns to manufacture hair straightening products – especially the recent explosion in popularity of the Brasilian Keratin blow out that is very much in demand globally. Especially in the East and South America, as well as most image conscious women that want straight hair?
    Please can you enlighten me at renee@rdesigns.co.za

  • Michelle

    Thanks for the article!! You know, I am a student and I got lots of information from this article for my writhing homework about black rhinos. Thank you! Thank you!

  • Dan

    Message to so called editors

    I do not see why my last message has not been displayed, some posts on here are much worse than what I wrote. I was writing what most people concerned about this are thinking. If you actually have a reason for not putting my message on the website I would love to know it!

    I look forward to your reply

  • thulani maswangane

    thanks for such profound inforation, i would love to know more in rhinos cause in south africa tofay there is a high poaching of rhinos which in few years to come the young generation wont able ro see about them , bt they can learn about it. thanx

  • Rico Mancini

    Do not the Yemeni men leave their daggers to another man when they die? Seems a dagger held by a previous owner is just as precious. (I am weary of men, males and their concern for their manhood.)

  • Root

    I think there should be Free Range Rhino farms. Remember the horn can be shaved under anaesthetic. The money gained from this should be put towards the up keep of the Rhinos and any profit should got towards a project to re-educate the cultures that prescribe them. Eventually there would be a decline in demand and the farms could close. One should remember that there’ll be no advertising, no lobbying to keep the trade going, just a simple closure. The farms could also provide training for aspiring rhino keepers, game wardens etc. Blimey, you could even charge people to volunteer to help! Changing an entire cultures way of thinking takes time.

    If only I’d won the £166million! ;)

  • makotoko

    Beautiful article… I think we have to stop the hunting thing in totality

  • Shiva Prasad Kafle

    I like the above information about Rhino Horn because i am the person from Nepal where it is found in Chitwan & Bardiya national park. I touched it and saw it live…

  • Debra cake

    I am sick to hear the roadshow just estimated a mans Chinese horn collection at 1 millon dollars or more. All this does is makes man kill more rhinos! They should be worthless! Anyone that buys or sells a beautiful,rare animal of natures horn, is just plan stupid! it’s sad that the things that are rare and precious, have to suffer and die because man is greedy! Man should appreciate and put a value to keep them alive. God will punish all those who’s hands are dirty. You are guilty if you take part in buying or selling these horns! Shame on the roadshow! You need to question your heart!

  • Tandi

    I am a proud South African and conservationist who has been horrified over the last few years of what human greed is capable of. Many of my fellow South Africans have lost their moral. Even though they themselves do not believe that rhino horn possesses any magical powers, they slaughter innocent animals and, steal and destroy their fellow countrymen’s natural heritage. All of it just for money. I am not talking about the really poor poeple who are sometimes used to do the dirty work on the ground, but about the highly qualified “conservationists”/farm owners/veterinarians who have a good income, but who are never satisfied, prefer living a lie and supporting the illegal trade in a product that is theoretically worthless. I challenge all my fellow South Africans who have also felt powerless and have been forced to drop their faces in shame, to stand up, stand together and help filter out these rotten apples.

    As for the people who claim that rhino horn can cure cancer and do all sorts of magical things, I challenge you to take part in a proper scientific experiment where cancer patients are treated with either rhino horn or a similar synthetic product without knowing who gets which. If significantly more people is cured by the actual rhino horn, I will believe you and then we can start thinking of harvesting horn sustainably. For the Yemen people, don’t you think the current horns in your possession will have more sentimental value if they are simply carried accross from one generation to the next?

  • DB

    Denise Stafforrd and family are obviously not very intelligent!!!

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  • Sonja

    I was totally against any form of any legal trading in rhino horn…but like everything else to humans…take the mistery out of rhino horn and do the (legal) shaving of rhino horn by proffessionals…open the market, prices will tumble and voola.. It will be impossible to protect each and every rhino in the wild…this is the only solution to this problem…funds created can go back to SaveIOurRhino-fund…I love Rhinos…they are so beautifull and to see them run in the wild is so powerfull…something needs to be done…I want to take my 4X4 vehicle and
    show that to my grandchildren one day..not just pictures!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Greenspam

    My doctor prescribed me to chew on my finger nails to lower my fever! Yeah! Modern medicine is wonderful, isn’t it?

  • Conservation Biologist

    Obviously Denise and family are self-absorbed idiots and are of the breed of humans that I would not bother to swerve around if standing in the road and in fact would floor the accelerator as I approached them. I am concerned with the image of conservationists that have been voiced however. As in any career you have the occasional quack or bad apple but to stereotype conservationists is a dangerous trend. Most of us conservation biologists have sacrificed the American comforts of life such as reasonable salary, a home, family, as well as electricity and plumbing in many cases in order to dedicate our entire realm of life and of living to preserve and protect the magnificent species of this planet. Just please please careful not to lump us all into the hole that the few undesirables deserve to be in. Thank you and keep fighting for endangered species and their ecosystems.

  • Joost

    I think we should all post off our finger and toe nail clippings to a central depot. At the depot the clippings are collected, softened and pressed together to make …. rhino horns.
    These “man made horns” could then be sold.

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    obviously like your website but you need to test the spelling on several of your posts. Several of them are rife with spelling problems and I to find it very bothersome to tell the truth however I will surely come again again.

  • Zaida Gibeault

    Always good to see Prussian Blue get a mention the first synthetic coordination complex, so it plays a key role in inorganic chemistry. I always demonstrate it in my inorganic reaction mechanisms course as an example of a colour caused by intervalence charge transfer. One minor quibble though in what sense is prussic acid potent’? As a poison, yes, but as an acid? It’s pretty weak as a proton donor (pKa about 9, I think).

  • Zak Edgar

    Lets look at FACTS! considering that this article is an outline of what the horn is used for based on facts.
    Firstly South Africa is in possession of 93% of the total world rhino population. Thus we are the fore runners in Rhino conservation in the world! With Africa opening its doors to the east in trade and all manner of things the criminals have also been granted the chance to just walk through our borders as they please. If we are to continue to be the forerunners of rhino conservation we need to stop the poaching of our rhinos! There are several methods of poaching rhinos! The first is a poor person gets given all the material to go and track down a rhino kill it and then sell the horn to the eastern criminals. The next is more involved and more expensive, and involves vets and helicopters and using the latest technology like night vision goggles and dart guns. At the end of the day the rhino horn ends up in the same place though the Eastern medicine market.
    Next fact! Pre 2007 when we saw a dramatic increase in rhino poaching there were still rhinos poached! not many but it was still happening! about 20odd a year. Due to loopholes in the hunting legislation it has been possible for these eastern crime syndicates to enter our country and “hunt” rhino and send the horn back to the east under the premise of being a trophy, the horn then just gets ground up and sold to the medicine trade!
    There are about 6 Million Chinese in china alone, and this obviously excludes Vietnam, Thailand and any other nation in the area. If one family like “denise” has a stockpile of 150lb of horn for their own use and each family in that area does the same based on the belief that the horn does in fact have medical and magical properties how many rhinos would have to be culled /hunted/ de horned/ shaved etc to be able to flood the market with horn? and thus force prices to drop? and will farming rhino (who have a gestation period of 15 months) supply enough to curb the illegal trafficking in the horn? We need to educate those that believe the horn has these properties in order for them to stop using it! apart from the fact that Denise has no problem openly admitting to using a banned substance and will openly admit that they have rhino horn in storage (also illegal) and thus admits to breaking several international laws?? These people need to know that the rhinos are disappearing!!!! and the reason why is that people are greedy and selfish. and will go to any measure to make money! There are other problem too. The first and most scary (for rhino that is) is that the Chinese government has and still is investing large sums of money into farming rhino and obtaining horns and doing tests. All of these are illegal in terms of the Cities treaty for which they have no regard. And then we still have the greedy people who are so willing to post their email addresses here to sell or buy rhino horn?

    There are ways that rhinos can have the horn treated so as to make them unfit for human consumption! If intelligence and education and facts and laws are not going to work stopping people from using horns perhaps this is the only method! AND IT IS POSSIBLE!! The first step is to treat each and every horn that is stockpiled legally! Including those in museums and those that are trophies! and those stockpiled by game farmers! then start to treat captive rhino (both methods would be considerably cheaper than doing it to a live wild rhino.) Then concentrate on ALL the other rhino!! If laws dont work, pesticides will!

  • Marianne du Plessis

    Zak, thank you for your valued information above. I 100% agree with you. I understand the treating of the Rhino Horn you desribe above is an excellent method of keeping a Rhino parasite free, as well as having the additional and most IMPORTANT of benfits – that is’s unfit for human consumption. I believe RHINO RESCUE PROJECT just outside Johannnesburg are undertaking this action. I have learned that it costs R20 000 for treat one Rhino, which entails: vet services to dart and tranquilsie the Rhino, treating the horn, micro-chipping the Rhino, DNA sampling of the animals and an indelible dye on the horn which shows up on scanners at airports etc. The treatment lasts for 3 – 4 years, whereafter the pesticide must be reapplied to the horn. I know that Rhino Rescue Project are desperately in need of financial assistance so they can get this done to all Rhino throughout SA.. Also, your idea of treating all stockpiles etc is superb! Thank you for your informative and valued input.

  • vona ashmore

    Zak that is a very good right up ,their is so much mumbo jumbo on here just canot belive some humans what they have put down ,they also need educating big time themselves South Africa is known for the game parks and the wildlife which are left to roame about freely in their enviroment ,this is what brings in the tourist to SA as we have one thing in common wildlife and the beauty of a lovely country and this is how it should be ,Tourist bring in much need revenue to keep people in their work places ,so if you think about it a poacher will sell a horn for instance to a group of people were does that money go only to the bad people to line their pockets , so the majority of the South African people get nothing ,at the end of the day the only people who do benefit are the poachers and their cronies ,And what a load of crap someone put down about their are enough white rhinos it is people like you who dont have a clue what is going on stick to your job love and go and play with your sand castle rather ..Leave the rhinos alone for the next generation to be able to see them in the wild were they belong !!

  • Nicole

    Denise is a shocking excuse for a occupant of this planet… It is so sad that ignorant fools as yourself are causing the end of existance of such amazing animals… would it be okay if some one killed you for your hair cos it was thought(as in it doesnt do a damn thing) to cure their athelets foot?? dont you think if it cures cancer that scientists would have would a way to dervive the curing extract whilst still preserving the animal??? and then no one in the world would have cancer??

  • Ojay

    How sad that the western black rhino of Africa is now officially extinct (and I assume the demand for their horns played a nasty part in this)

  • Nettie

    SPREAD the WORD especially in ASIE. RHINO HORN CAUSES INFERTILITY IN THE LONG TERM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • chris

    I have an idea that I would like to share with you. If we gamble on changing the beliefs of 1,6 billion Chinese, we might lose that bet. Why don’t we flood the Chinese market with counterfeit rhino horns? They should be relatively easy to make, all you need is human hair and some clever designers to make the horns look and smell like real. If supply increases, prices will drop. The Chinese would need DNA testing to the discern ‘human’ horn from real. The money we make from it could be invested in the protection of these beautiful animals.

  • ouasman

    20 kg rhino horn available for sale if someone in need contact us via :dmixmark@yahoo.com

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    in for buy rhino horn
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    I have been gone for a while, but now I remember why I used to love this site. Thank you, I will try and check back more often. How frequently do you update your web site?

  • tafseer

    To me, it is the isolated case of a disgruntled young person who made the wrong choice. Just as much as you get (quite regularly now) gun-loving youth going on shooting sprees in the US or other countries, or the random guy who loves stab-flicks and goes on a stabbing spree in his local shopping centre, or the serial rapist who is inspired and propelled in his deeds by his promiscuous habits.

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  • Tessa

    Very interesting and disturbing reading! Denise and Juman, very ballsy of you to appear on this forum. (Never mind, my children also believe in Santa and the tooth fairy!) Be careful when your 150lbs stash of placebo runs out and where you buy, yes… the next lot might not be as placebo’ish and might (hopefully, yes) induce vomiting and goodness knows what else, because farmers are injecting toxins into the horns. Their rhino horns which belong to them, yep. Yes Zak! Thumbs up. Please watch the film Saving Rhino Phila. Denise and Juman, no words for you really, but watch out for those leprechauns! Oh, and please don’t breed.

  • Lisa

    I have a left over portion of a Rhino Horn that was past down to me from my Ancestors, about 4-5 generaltion back. I’ve heard stories about how my Ancestors has used it to cured fever, diarrhea, infections, poisons internally & externally…etc. My Ancestors, Chinese, traveled far away from home to find better living, the Rhino Horn is their necessary medicine for their long journey, back then modern medicines were not available to them. But not we can get modern medicines averywhere, we don’t use this old fashion ways of medicines anymore. Somehow, other stories have created, and people are greedy. I strongly believe this is all about money, just like some people make weapons then created wars to sell weapons. EVEN HUMAN ARE BEING KILLED…. IT’S ALL ABOUT $$$$$$$$….. YOU KNOW !!!!!!

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  • Cody V. Zielinski

    They should not use rhinos horn to be used as dagger handle. Time will come we will not see rhinos in wildlife… only on movies made out of 3D. How sad.

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  • Worried

    the people on here trying to buy and sell rhino honrs – has anyone investigated who they are?

  • Nicola

    I agree with Worried -@EDITORS- why do you leave this content posted?? Given this is a Nature and educational site, these posts and email addresses are inappropriate.

    To those disgusting and stupid individuals that actually beileve that a horn has magical powers, get real.

    Karma. Its coming for you.

  • talk

    let’s talk,

    and talk and talk and talk and talk and talk……huuuuu boring.

  • Chris

    While there is money to be made from rhino horn, there will be poaching. Legalising horn trade will only work if it is possible to flood the market, which I doubt. Economic growth in the east will not slow soon, so demand will only grow. There are billions of Chinese, Malaysians, Vietnamese, Indians and Koreans and while only a portion of these people are potential rhino horn buyers, my gut feel is that there is not enough horn to go around. Fighting poaching in the bush and in the courts is also not going to work. There are just too many of them and too many loopholes. Instead, we should think in terms of the universal equaliser – Money. How much money does South Africa stand to loose when rhino-related eco-tourism stops? How much money does these countries stand to loose if all concerned with the conservation of rhino’s boycot tourism to these destinations. I know that I will not make any of these countries an holiday destination out of protest.

  • James

    Denise (if that is really your name), you are either extremely gullible or a troll making comments calculated to shock. I am now convinced that the most dangerous weapon in use is the human mouth.
    I write as a doctor who specialises in children’s mental health and can assure you (and anyone else who may be influenced by your nonsense post) that powdered keratin cannot cure cancer or anything else for that matter. It doesn’t SAVE lives, it (or the desire for it) DESTROYS lives. I (and many others) resent the way in which the precious wildlife of this planet is now approaching extinction thanks to greed of those whose only priority is financial gain or selfish idiots who believe in such mythology.

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  • Brian Tumlinson

    Is there away to trim these horns of a rhino without kill it. It very sad that this is happening still. I know that this won’t help and I wish I could do
    more. It really sad to even think that a religious or for some call miracle cure that we will lose such a beautiful beast.

  • texas

    Stop buying rhino horns..people are to blame to make them in high demand ….its inhumane no matter what they cure or do not cure. How would you like for someone to go to ur home and chop your nose or fingers, or get your pet and chop its body parts for medicinal use. Rhinos are Gods creatures too and deserve the respect to exist like we exist. Shame on you who kill and profit from Gods creatures.

  • Robintro

    Good comments, but let me ask a question. Whose fault will it be when some one has taken/stolen bundles of ur money that u kept on the top of ur vehicle which is parked at the parking? Is that Ur fault or the one who took/stole that bundle of money? From neutral side, I feel that it is nature of humans to be tempted n greeds automaticaly come out when it is regarding money. So i think the owner has to look after his own properties more securely. Why not make real jurassic parks for rhinos intsead of cursing poachers, sellers, buyers etc? Because human’s greeds will never end even if u (evil minded) keep cursing, criticizing those poachers etc. Our almighty God does not like his children to fight/argue/curse etc.each other. So any country where rhinos live, the government n people who love rhino more than own family(because we r children/grand grand grand… Children of . Adam and. Eve), can build like jurassic park. Then, that wil some how decrease in killing rhinos by poachers, and depending on how security is arrange, who knows that wil totally stop poacher from killing rhinos. And that wil help preserving the rhinos for future generation. And most important thing is that we will not need cursing each other for the sake of rhinos. Sorry if i hurt anyone, i hav no intension of hurting any one. Thanks.

  • kay

    I have just visited South Africa on holiday and encountered rhino’s while on safari. How could anyone murder these beuatiful animals, its beyond believe. People who use powered rhino horn are ignorant and pathetic to think it can cure any illness. It doesnt believe me.

    Please Please help save the rhino. They are after all gods creatures and deserve to live thier lives in peace.

  • Steve

    We need to cut the demand, we all know how much these Rhino’s and Elephants suffer and even lose their lives for the Horn, so here’s my suggestion to slow and eventually stop the slaughter.
    I am sure there is someone out there that can come up with an injectable for Horn’s, that will poison the Horns which wil not be harmful to the animals but be leathal to Humans..i am not a scientist, but i have invented something in my life..im sure someone can do this..in my mind its the only way to slow this down..it wont completely eradicate poaching, i am a realist, but certainly horns for medicines would surely slow…come on doctors scientist laboratry techno’s think about it.

  • dee

    A shame that horn continues to be believed to have such medicinal powers and unable to be dispelled by educating. The yet untapped power of the human brain holds the true reason why these ancient animal recipes seem to work. A shame that the astronomical price value of such medicinal animal parts can’t be displaced by, oh, say, the BRAIN TISSUE of a “believer” instead. Even more a shame is that an animal that becomes increasingly more rare to see due to the slaughter , is left behind, hacked apart, still alive with much suffering. — Poachers could even not eliminate the animal’s misery and maybe utilize the meat of this creature to feed some of the hungry?

    I have been to the African lands more than once. Never seen a rhino. And it is painful to see and hear these reports of what happens to these and other creatures valued for their “dead parts”. Of course, money controls the outcome, and until politicians of involved countries GROW SOME BALLS and change things, the exporting will continue.

  • hjttttsghjr;z

    why not just stop poaching rhinos and just leave them alone. it is a horrible thing taking place and there is no reason for it. appart for medicine but does that even work. i mean seriously. theres no need for it our medicine is perfectly fine we dont need rhinos horn to ‘improve’ it!

  • Bambi

    In reply to Robintro,

    I live in South Africa and I am disturbed to see the senseless killing and maiming of our Rhinos.
    These game reserves are huge, not like a game park (a couple of square kilometres) and the task of the game rangers to be everywhere all the time is impossible.
    A few of the poachers have been shot and killed, but this is on rare occasions where they have been tracked, etc. Normally by the time the rangers are alerted to possible poaching, the Rhino has already been de-horned and/or killed.
    It is a sad situation, and one can only hope that the poaching ends soon, as one day our children and grand-children won’t be able to see a live Rhinoceros but only read about them in books like the extinct Dodo.

  • VivKay

    It’s a vile human, anthropocentric notion that animals and species are commodities, at their disposal to allow to live or kill, for a myth or even a small amount of social status, or health benefits. It’s like massacre of humans for their teeth, or fingernails, and justifying it as “good” for their beauty treatment! What is missing is human intelligence, empathy and a sense of belonging to the ecosystem and planetary biosphere. It’s as if these predatory humans were passing shelves in a supermarket where anything there is THEIR property, and available to plunder and kill – for whatever trivial and ephemeral use. Homo sapiens means “wise man”, but it’s a meaningless title – I don’t think so!

  • Peter

    This is to demystify some of the claims made by this article. It is true that rhinoceros horn can be and has be used for thousands of years in TCM, but in the 21st century is not used anymore, unless it’s in an illegal way and that unfortunately still happens.

    However, a good TCM doctor will be able to have the same results using a different herb combination, especially in the western world. TCM is a highly developed medicine which cannot be just judged lightly to have a valid opinion of it.

    And just for some of you that might say that there is no evidence backing it up, think twice, there is a lot of research done and on the doing, showing not only that it’s effective for many problems, but we are also starting to see more detailed experiements showing its effects and mechanisms in more detail (particularly in acupuncture) with modern science, amazing!… Just look for it

  • Frank Gainsford

    Nature conservation is a costly affair. If one can not legally sell the remains of an animal how do you propose that this animal pay for its stay in a nature conservation area?

    Who will foot the bill for any veterinary services required during the animals life time.

    If an animal has costs involved during its protection, but no income is derived from the presence of the animal in the nature conservation area Who will be responsible for the costs and how will they be managed?

    Fencing is expensive and so are anti poaching activities. Who is responsible to ensure that these costs are paid and how do those of you who support the ban propose that nature conservation organisations should go about finding the fun ding for these activities.

    I hear plenty of objections and lots of emotional black mail, but no solutions. If you do not have a solution please do not make a noise that prevents those who have a solution from being heard.

  • Cathy

    Shocking story, based on great research. Money, money, money makes the world go ’round, the world go ’round … God made these animals to share the world with us, but some just see the profit in killing, maming, and taking from them what is worth money. We are human beings with greater brain power. Why are we not using it?

    I am sickened by this, but also wonder what the status of the elephant tusks is at this time. Taken for their beauty in ivory carvings – how stupid can we be and continue to share this planet with the animals that share, peacefully, with us.

  • Ed-L

    Rhino horn is being poisoned by African governments and conservation organisations, so that people ingesting it will be sicikened. This poison also has bad long term effects. As for elephants and rhinos, I note positively that the Kenya Wildlife Service has recently issued “shoot to kill” orders against anyone seen near elephants or rhinos with the intent to poach (kill) the animal.

  • Colin

    Excellent article to help dispel the myth. Traditional Chinese medicine is leading to the extiction of the rhino through its TOTAL IGNORANCE of the medicinal value of rhino horn. If they want to persist with prescibing keratin for a possible placebo effect, they should source it elsewhere (e.g. cow’s hooves, fingermail cuttings, etc.) rather than causing the slaughter of the rhino.

  • sophs

    I would like to thank you for this article, its is very informative and interesting. It is great to hear that scientists are researching and trying to find solutions!
    I do think respect of others is imperative if we want to live in harmony with nature and other cultures. So, yes, some people have given their opinion about denise and her private stash of rhino horn. Some may find their comments disrespectful, but she is the one who openly showed she supported rhino slaughtering, admited to having what is rhino horn powder that apparently cost the lives of 15 rhinos and she showed no remorse!!! What about all the other millions of people with cancer and emphasyma??? How is that respct???
    Another thing, many of the sicknesses and ailments that the rhino horn is belived to cure, can be cured by other much more cheaper medicines. We have rainforests that are abundant in medicinal plants still waiting to be discovered! Is that not an alternative?

  • jacinta

    for every dagger you have, a Rhino was killed. by the time Rhinos will go extinct as a result of this cultural practice. what will you do with your young boys? will you continue initiating them? lets leave this practice and save nature.
    Think about this.

  • anita

    At least one rhino is killed every day due to the mistaken belief that rhino horn can cure diseases. The main market is now in Vietnam where there is a newly emerged belief that rhino horn cures cancer. Rhino horn is also used in other traditional Asian medicine to treat a variety of ailments including fever and various blood disorders. It is also used by wealthy Asian as a cure for hangovers.”- WWF
    people have no right to go around poaching and killing animals because they have “cures”
    the reason why you are getting sick is a way of life, you may not want to die or you may not want someone else to die right? so why would you take the life of an animals who has done nothing to you. one day all the animals are going to go away and it will be all humans fault. i don’t want to live on this sick, disgusting planet anymore.

  • Lomakanda

    Naturopaths sometimes sample hair of a live person to effect a diagnosis, on a continuous basis, even months later. I have no opinion on this, I just observe. Would end users/ TCM practitioners not consider that horn sourced from an animal still alive and healthy and on the hoof at time of consumption to be better in satisfying whatever it is they desire from it? I don’t like darting rhino’s – the dart site can be infected, there is trauma, so all those who advocate this practice in order to dehorn, poison the horn, gamble with the life of the animal. I believe the horns should be kept sharp and neat, as befits the dignity of the animal. Rhinos (I only know the “white rhino” ceratotherium simum a little) are for ever rubbing their horns, play-fight each other, especially young males. Their development is much at the same rate as humans, and they might not have excellent frontal vision, but their they have excelllent peripheral vision. They can be curious and can approach while grazing unnoticed at a surprisingly fast rate a person standing in the veld observing them. To my mind, especially younger specimens rival if not surpass race horces in speed and agility, and they love playing, especially after a tropical rainshower. They have a distinct pleasant smell (to put things in perspective: billy goats stink) , as they are choosy grazers, and the sound they make is a melodious deep but high pitched oooeenk, not the ferocious roar or bleat sometimes attributed to them. Someone, maybe Hermes, should come up with a rhino smell aftershave. Rhinos are hedonistic to the extreme, and this is only curbed by their need to graze. They love being pampered, rubbed, deloused, scratched. They become quite socialized and habituated to some humans, as many owners will agree. When a rhino allows you to touch it, it takes a patronizing pose that turns you into their valet. In the wild, turtles often feed on their ticks when they lie in water, or birds will peck off the ticks.(so maybe the ticks are also valuable? imagine being busted under Cites for possession of rhinoblood engorged ticks) They produce mountains of droppings, and paper is produced from it. Conservation agencies take note; require that all paper contains a percentage of rhino droppings. I once took a dropping the size of a bowling ball home to impress my daughter’s bunny rabbit. The dog started barking at the dropping, and then proceeded to consume it. Another commercial opportunity for the pet food industry: rhino dropping flavoured dog food. My moslem brothers take note, rhino, including its horn is haram. My Jewish brothers already know that rhino is unclean in the religious sense. My buddhist and hindu brothers would not think of harming it. An habituated rhino would allow its human valet to do a hornicure in a respectful manner, keeping the shavings as a royal tip, much as you allow your hairdresser to keep your hair. Many hairdressers could become excellent rhino groomers, as they already have the right attitude. Riding a rhino is a painful exercise, as it sometimes involves flying. Surviving being thrown by a rhino makes one member of a small club. I have only seen rhino using their horns to spar or pick up and throw thnigs (like me) never to deliberately stab, though I suspect you could teach them as an anti-poaching technique. When you run away from them on a regular basis they learn to chase humans. Use rhinos to assist the trainers of olympic sprinters. I hope the picture is starting to emerge that they are more valuable on the hoof than dead. Rhino, or Mkhombe in Zulu are without malice, and if they can be accused of being stupid, it is only because they don’t understand why you cannot play rough. Can they be tamed? I don’t know. I’ve never heard of anyone saddling his rhino and riding into town. I understand this has (?) to be done sometimes, but I am always overwhelmed when people come down on rhino with helicopters and pick-up trucks, loudhailers and teams of helpers wearing designer Sterling khaki for the cameras, dart guns and chain saws and hypodermic syringes, and crates and steel cables and winches, in order to save them, Daktari style. If it happenned to me I would doubt the motives of my benefactors. If you really want some horn to remedy some weakness, valse up to a rhino and ask nicely, and it would then allow you to trim a few hairs from the base of the horn, or maybe even polish the horn with a file or smooth sandpaper and let you keep the filings. The therapeutic value would lie in the communion with this creature, not in its consumption.

  • Katrina

    So sad.. the closest thing we have to a unicorn, and they are treated with such disrespect. I am all for natural remedies, but the selfishness of humans to destroy other creatures to obtain them completely works against any benefit of this natural remedy.

  • Johann

    I knew this already, but I am surprised that this information is not seriously distributed to those countries where this information could influence the potential users to switch to something that is not just a myth due to “tradition”
    Education could well be the factor to save the lives of rhinos. Off course those who distribute the product would resist the spreading of the real facts as they make lots of money. It seems like the authorities in those user-countries themselves are to blame for believing in the healing powers of rhino horn. Thus, convince the leadership and some progress could well be made to save the lives of rhinos.

  • John

    Why not treat the horn with something that renders them useless to poachers? I’m sure there’s something around that could be painted on, making them unusable.

  • Anya

    I am a grade 12 learner and I am doing a project on Rhino poaching. Doing this project is extremely difficult in terms of the graphic pictures I have to research and the horrifying statistics! It sickens me that in a country that is blessed to have such magnifisant and beautiful animals, there are those who want to harm one of our BIG 5, and just for their own personal gain!! Maybe if we start treating the poachers like they treat the Rhinos, they will finally realise how crule an inhumain this is!! STOP RHINO POACHING!!!!

  • chintu

    i’m from assam (india) and i feel like i will be the last in my family to see a live ONE HORNED RHINO

  • P

    Actually, the real cause of rhino decline of the rhino began with habitat destruction, which brought numbers down so low that now we have to worry about poaching. We have no right to force our first world beliefs onto traditional chinese medicine when we are killing animals for meat and products every day. Rhinos do not have to be killed to harvest their horn, therefore we can farm rhinos and harvest their horns while at the same time producing more rhinos. If you want to save the rhinos, support rhino ranching and create an agricultural economy where rhinos will be humanely treated and raised for their horns.

  • VKS

    Idea: Why not go after the people in possession of it. Horn is mainly used for decorative purposes. If people that have in their possession an article made of Horn to “show-ff” and could be prosecuted or even have the item taken from them…that may discourage the purchase? In an article that led me to investigate exactly what this animals horn is used for, they propose to make it LEGAL to try and regulate it and save this species from extinction:

    “The scientists argue that the entire world demand for horn could be met legally by humanely shaving the horns of live rhinos, and from animals which die of natural causes. Rhinos grow about 0.9 kg of horn each year, and the risks to the animal from today’s best-practice horn harvesting techniques are minimal. The legal trade in farmed crocodile skins is an example of an industry where legalization has saved the species from being hunted to extinction.”


    I’m not sure that I agree with this either but its an idea. The fact that these horns can be traced by “fingerprints” to see if its was a legal purchase or not would help…I guess. I just don’t understand why these animals are slaughtered AT ALL. I mean, we have so many other resources that don’t involve KILLING ANIMALS.

  • DonQuixote

    Why doesn’t somebody come up with a method of artificially creating rhino horn? If the market was thus flooded with the stuff the insatiable demand would be met and the future of the rhino assured. Furthermore, it would probably be more cost effective than pouring vast sums of money into trying to protect the surviving rhinos.

  • bob

    US drones could be used to patrol the huge national park. Better to use drones that way than to kill innocents with, no?

  • Pieter Van Aswegen

    Since rhino horn is only keratin, and according to Raj Amin of the Zoological Society of London “you’d do just as well chewing on your fingernails” , why don`t we give them just that! If ordinary citizens of the world collect their monthly finger and toe nail clippings, we can send this to theses asian countries at the cost of a postage stamp to satisfy their need for keratin! Imagine if millions of envelopes with nail clippings arrive at these embasies in our home countries…. Never before has so much money and manpower and effort been focussed on saving the rhino, and never before have we seen such numbers being massacred!!!
    Let us all think about this silly sounding suggestion, but we can get the message across to the consumers of rhino horn that they are destroying, no wiping out a species due to ignorance, greed, and misinformation!

  • Cheryl Wylie

    What I know is that there is far more to the senseless butchering of the rhino than meets the eye….it is pure greed, human greed for money…and because it involves money, there is no regard for the slaughtering of the magnificent innocent rhino…it’s defenseless against such vile, unfeeling human beings…so how then to end this horrific slaughtering of the innocent rhino? Will the culprits want to negotiate with legal farming for rhino horn? Will the culprits want to negotiate harvesting rhino horn when there is natural death of the rhino?…ALL of it should be banned totally…no one needs to use the keratin/protein/whatever from the rhino horn…it belongs to the rhino…Man’s Greed for money is the problem. Don’t give up the fight for the rhino… EDUCATION IS KEY.

  • Thuy Dam


    Please share these facts widely.


    All wildlife are gardeners of the forests. Elephants are among the top 10 most important wildlife gardeners of our forests because they’re able to carry and plant seeds at extremely long distance, per the article at the end of this comment. It’s paramount to the continued existence of the human race that we protect rhinos, elephants, and all wildlife together with our forests.

    The Maya civilization vanished from the face of the earth mainly due to the Climate Change in the Yucatan. We must learn from this lesson! We are currently experiencing Climate Change. Protecting wildlife and our forests is a good starting point in an effort to slow down Climate Change and hopefully reverse it.




    Elephants: the gardeners of Asia’s and Africa’s forests
    Read more at http://news.mongabay.com/2011/0425-hance_camposarceiz_blake.html#RFUDsCHyGyhg40So.99

  • morgan

    It has nothing to do with Muslim religion, please don’t say that. Its just the culture of that area. thank you.

  • Cath

    Thank you for the excellent article. I am a South African, and have seen, with horror, the recent massive increase in the poaching of rhinos. The only way to stop this is by legalizing the trade of rhino horn and allowing the game farmers to humanely remove the horns of their rhinos. The proceeds from the sale of these horns could go towards a breeding programme to prevent the extinction of these magnificent animals. This has already been suggested at a recent international conference where the SA delegation was all but ignored. Stop being stupid and sentimental- this is not a game. This idea will work if given a chance and the survival of an entire species depends on its implementation.

  • Rebecca

    I am so distressed by this needless killing of beautiful creatures. I am overwhelmed by the carnage. It has to stop – I have written to the Consul in Edinburgh and the embassy called yesterday to say the consul has replied. Will be interesting to see what his response is. I am prepared to work with them in Scotland to spread awareness and STOP this needless and heartless killing. Africa needs its wild animals – it is its life blood!!! Rebecca

  • Aria

    This is so sad. I nearly cried when i heard of this on TV! I’m doing a speech on this at school to get more and more people aware of this catastrophe.Why cant poachers just leave them alone! -Aria

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