We wanted to give you an update on our plans to relocate around 30 threatened rhinos from South Africa to Monarto Zoo.
In a world first, we’re working with The Australian Rhino Project and other Australian zoos to build an insurance population in Australia over four years, to ensure their survival before eventually reintroducing the animals to Africa.
With around 1,102 rhinos killed in South Africa last year alone, this project has never been more important.
Our biggest hurdle so far has been complying with the Australia’s biosecurity requirements. These regulations are important to ensure diseases are not introduced to Australia via this importation. As a conservation charity, we take biosecurity very seriously.
That’s why we’ve decided to use a third country option to act as an interim step in the relocation process. That means the rhinos will be transported from South Africa to a third country to serve a quarantine period, before calling Monarto Zoo home.
This is a standard process for many animal importations into Australia. The reality is, it may have taken years to bring the rhino direct from South Africa – time we all agree the species does not have.
Our aim has always been to get the rhinos here to join our breeding group as quickly as we can so that we can build an insurance population before it’s too late, and importation via a third country will help us achieve this goal sooner.
The objective of The Australian Rhino Project, working with Australian zoos, is to maintain a viable population, with targeted genetic and demographic management that will ultimately allow for the repatriation of African rhinos back to their natural habitat and homelands when it is safe to do so.
As a conservation charity, funding is critical to this mission in order to cover the cost of transporting the rhinos by air from South Africa to Australia, preparing the facilities, quarantine, and ongoing support and maintenance of the herd.
We are currently home to six Southern White Rhinoceros and two Black Rhinoceros, and we look forward to providing additional rhinos with a safe haven as soon as possible.
Love rhinos? Help us save them before it’s too late by adopting a rhino. You’ll be helping them stay a stride ahead of extinction.
Adopt a rhino today!