Western Black Rhino EXTINCT11th November 2011
The Red List, drawn up by the International Union for Conservation of Nature ( IUCN ) which assesses threatened species, has declared that no wild black rhinos remain in west Africa. A subspecies of white rhino is central Africa is also listed as possibly extinct.
The annually updated Red List now records more threatened species than ever saying that despite conservation efforts, 25% of the world's mammals are at risk of extinction.
Rhino's are under increasing threat as habitat destruction and rampant poaching for their horns drives the species to the brink.
As well as declaring the western black rhino extinct, it records the northern white rhino, a subspecies in central Africa, as being on the brink of extinction. The last Javan rhino outside Java is also believed extinct.
"While overall numbers of black and white rhino have been rising, some subspecies are very vulnerable to poaching," says DSWF CEO, Melanie Shepherd. " DSWF has increased anti-poaching measures on all our rhino projects in Namibia, South Africa and India but we MUST stop the trade. We MUST make people realize that the true value of rhino horn is to the living, breathing mammal not for some useless medicinal tonic."
While the Red List gives a very mixed picture - there's some good news and some bad news - the overall trend is still a decline in biodiversity.
Read about our rhino projects here
Read more about the Red List here
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