World Rhino Day

  • IASbaba
  • September 23, 2021
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World Rhino Day

Part of: Prelims and GS III – Conservation 

Context World Rhino Day is observed on 22th September to spread awareness for all five species of rhino and work being done to save them.

  • It was first announced by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) – South Africa in 2010. 
  • The species of rhinoceros are on the verge of extinction due to persistent poaching and habitat loss over several decades.
  • Theme 2021: Keep the five Alive.
  • Objectives: Strengthening protection, Expanding the distribution range, Research and monitoring, Adequate and sustained funding.

About the species of Rhino

  • There are five species of rhino – white and black rhinos in Africa, and the greater one-horned, Javan and Sumatran rhino species in Asia.
  • IUCN Red List Status:
    • White Rhino: Near Threatened.
    • Black Rhino: Critically endangered.
    • Greater One Horned: Vulnerable.
    • Javan: Critically Endangered
    • Sumatran Rhino: Critically Endangered

Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros

  • Also known as Indian rhino, it is the largest of the rhino species. 
  • India is home to the largest number of Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros in the world. At present, there are about 2,600 Indian rhinos in India, with more than 90% of the population concentrated in Assam’s Kaziranga National Park.
  • Habitat: The species is restricted to small habitats in Indo-Nepal terai and northern West Bengal and Assam.
    • In India, rhinos are mainly found in Kaziranga NP, Pobitora WLS, Orang NP, Manas NP in Assam, Jaldapara NP and Gorumara NP in West Bengal and Dudhwa TR in Uttar Pradesh.
  • Threats:
    • Poaching for the horns
    • Habitat loss
    • Population density
    • Decreasing Genetic diversity
  • Protection Status:
    • IUCN Red List: Vulnerable.
    • CITES: Appendix-I
    • Wildlife Protection Act, 1972: Schedule I.

Conservation Efforts by India:

  • New Delhi Declaration on Asian Rhinos: India, Bhutan, Nepal, Indonesia and Malaysia have signed a declaration for the conservation and protection of the species.
  • DNA profiles of all rhinos: It will help in curbing poaching and gathering evidence in wildlife crimes involving rhinos.
  • National Rhino Conservation Strategy: It was launched in 2019 to conserve the greater one-horned rhinoceros.
  • Indian Rhino Vision 2020: To attain a wild population of at least 3,000 greater one-horned rhinos spread over seven protected areas in the Indian state of Assam by 2020.

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