Orphaned Baby Rhinos Are Inseparable After Both Of Their Mothers Are Killed By Poachers
HOEDSPRUIT, South Africa March 16, 2015 – A young orphaned rhino whose mother was killed by poachers is playing big brother to a baby rhino that has just endured the same tragic loss.
Orphaned baby rhino Gertjie, affectionately known as "Little G" was rescued in May, 2014 after his mother was poached for her horn. He was left alone and defenceless at only 3 months old. He was brought to the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC), that specializes in the treatment of both orphaned and injured animals, and has been under their care ever since. In November, 2014 baby rhino Matimba fell victim to the same crime when his mother was also killed for her horn. Matimba was brought to HESC to be cared for and rehabilitated just like Little G. What no one expected was that the one in charge of his rehab would be Little G himself.
Little G has only just turned one, but you would never know it seeing how he looks after Matimba, now five months old. The two rhinos are inseparable. From their meals, morning walks, mud baths and endless playtime with their toys (which include a set of full size truck tires) they do absolutely everything together. Little G has shown Matimba the ropes, and made the adjustment to life at the centre much easier than it was for him. He leads by example and obviously possesses some unique communication skills that we humans do not. He is extremely protective of Matimba, and will not let him out of his sight.
The global rhino poaching crisis has reached an all-time high with 1215 rhinos poached in South Africa alone during 2014. These senseless killings often result in orphans like Little G and Matimba, so HESC has expanded its facilty to accommodate them and launched a new security initiative called "Eyes On Rhinos". The programme includes in its first phase a security camera with night vision and sound that streams live video from the little rhinos' bedroom. In order to raise awareness and allow the world to also keep a watchful eye on Little G and Matimba, HESC is broadcasting this camera live on the web in partnership with africam.com. Viewers can check in on the two rhinos daily to see what they're up to and how their rehab is going. They can also connect to the HESC donation portal and contribute directly to the care and security of the orphans.
All funds raised through the "Eyes On Rhinos" program are channeled directly into the security upgrade of the Rescued Rhinos @ HESC (Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre), South Africa.