The rhino poaching crisis affecting South Africa is now recognized as a worldwide wildlife emergency. Modern human culture has become detached from its interface with the natural world. Using the rhinoceros as a symbol that acts as the defender of all life, Wilderness Leadership School, through its program WRAP (Wilderness Rhino Awareness Program) intends to educate through direct experience, creating a human culture that accepts its role of Trustee to the Earth.
What the Wrap program does
The Rhino has always been the victim of modern man’s greed and misplaced beliefs and, as such, acts as a compelling metaphor to initiate the conversations paramount to human consciousness and a sustainable human / wild interface. The Rhino represents our connecton to the ancient past; a past longer than our human experience. WRAP seeks to further ensure that the Rhino is protected and continues to live in the wild as a living icon to the spirit of respect and tolerance for all that is life.
The Wilderness Leadership School has many avenues for raising awareness for the plight of Rhino, the most prominent being our Community Wilderness Trails which focus on creating
community members living alongside Wilderness areas and poaching hotspots. This program is also very effective in terms of feeding
intelligence through to Anti Poaching Teams, in fact information and
intelligence from communities is possibly one of the most effective anti poaching tools we have available to us. Read More about community trails here
Data Collection and Monitoring
The Wilderness Leadership School works closely with Pilansberg National Park on their Rhino monitoring. The accepted National norm for Rhino monitoring is through an individual based identification method. This involves the physical capture of a Rhino, and through a series of tissue removal cuts in the large ears of the Rhino, an individual number is created for that animal, referred generally as notching. This ear cut pattern allows for future identification of individual Rhino from ground or air, by professionals or volunteer members of the public. This information is captured on simple field observation sheets and collated by the ecological services of Pilansberg and stored in that Rhinos’ individual life history file. During this notching procedure, micro-chips are inserted into the horns and hump of the rhino, as well as measuring the horn lengths and base sizes. A RHODiS forensic kit (tissue, horn, hair and nail sampling) is also conducted whilst the rhino is sedated. This provides conservation officials with invaluable information on existing Rhino populations and makes a huge difference in ensuring successful prosecution of Rhino Poachers.
Do you want to get directly involved or personally sponsor the costs and participate yourself in a Rhino Notching? Contact us for more details
In Partnership with a large group of stakeholders, funders and partners, the Wilderness Leadership School has been closely involved in the Rhino Youth Summit (2014)
The World Youth Rhino Summit focused on gathering of 100 young conservation leaders aged 15-17 years from South Africa, other African countries affected by rhino poaching, consumer countries in Asia, and other representative counties. Delegates, educators, and conservation leaders, were brought together at the symbolic iMfolozi Game Reserve to directly address the current rhino poaching crisis and develop resolutions needed to stop burgeoning wildlife crime.
Get Involved & make a difference
If you are interested in getting involved in our WRAP program, please contact us - one of our new and most exciting opportunities is for you to fund and directly participate in our Rhino monitoring and notching program, this involves real time out in Pilansberg National Park with conservation officials, veterinary services and taking part in a "Rhino Notching" - this is in itself an incredible once in a lifetime experience.
The WRAP program could not exist without the generous support and sponsorships from many partners and Wilderness Leadership School supporters like yourself ! The challenges are enormous and so is the urgent need for resources to stem the tide of Rhino poaching that is plaguing South Africa. Please consider donating towards WRAP - every bit, no matter how large or small helps !
Donate Via EFT
Wilderness Leadership School Trust
Branch: Mobeni 22 10 26
Account number: 50882039339
Please add Ref: WRAP and your name.