Rhinos may not be the cutest animals in the world, but their plight undoubtedly deserves attention. Several species of rhinoceros, including the Sumatran, black and Javan rhinos are all listed as critically endangered. In fact, only an estimated 40-60 Javan rhinos remain in the western part of that island, with none in captivity, according to the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species.
Last October, a conservation group in Vietnam announced that the last Javan rhino in that country was apparently killed for its horn.
With such low numbers, conservationists are working to protect the remaining Javan rhinos. In April, 120 new camera traps were installed at Ujung Kulon National Park. The cameras, donated by WWF and the International Rhino Federation (IRF) add to the 40 cameras that were already in the park. IRF Director Susie Ellis said in a statement, "Additional video traps are believed to provide an important step for ensuring the survival of existing Javan rhinos."
In April, officials in South Africa announced that they were tightening hunting rules "to combat illegal rhinoceros horn trading," reported AP. 448 rhinos were poached in that country in 2011 and 171 South African rhinos had already been kiled in 2012 by mid-April.
A Vietnamese man was arrested in Johannesburg in May when they found 10 rhino horns and an elephant tusk in an apartment.
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