Support for Save the Rhino Trust Trackers and Conservancy Rhino Rangers

Save the Rhino Trust
Grantee Save the Rhino Trust Namibia
Type Protected Area Management
Location Namibia
Species Black Rhino
Grant Amount $77,500
Duration 1 year

Namibia is home to 34% of the world's remaining black rhino population, and hosts 90% of the southwestern subspecies. Save the Rhino Trust Namibia (SRT) has protected black rhinos for more than 35 years. Trackers and rangers are essential to combating wildlife crime and protecting these rhinos, which form the last free-roaming population of black rhinos left on Earth. One of the first RRF grants was given to SRT to support their ‘rhino sighting bonus’ work, which incentivizes community rangers to track and protect rhinos using monthly bonus payments based on rhino sightings. Each sighting is verified with physical evidence, including photography and Rhino ID cards, marked with SMART technology, and ultimately forms part of the largest database on rhinos in the world. The results are extremely positive: there were a number of black rhinos born since RRF’s grant to SRT and there were zero rhinos poached for 2.5 years (until two were poached earlier in 2020). These two recent rhino poaching incidents are likely in response to economic hardship brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, making it all the more critical that SRT's rangers and trackers receive bonus payments to maintain their presence in the field.