WWF urges Tanzania to review rhino conservation policies

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An endangered east African black rhinoceros and her young one walk in Tanzania's Serengeti park in this file photo from May 21, 2010. reuters

DAR ES SALAAM (Xinhua) – The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the world’s leading conservation organisation, on Saturday urged the government of Tanzania to review its conservation policies to enhance the management of rhino and other endangered species.

Amani Ngusaru, WWF Tanzania Country Director, said the government should also support the recently developed six-year National Rhino Conservation and Management Strategy.

“There should also be verification of the southern sub-population of rhinos in the Selous Game Reserve and develop options for inclusive rhino management plan countrywide,” Mr Ngusaru said during the commemoration of the World Rhino Day in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

He said WWF Tanzania will provide about 350,000 US dollars support for rhino conservation programme in Tanzania in the next two years.

In recent years, Mr Ngusaru said, rhinos have been threatened by poaching, urbanisation and pollution, which have left certain rhino species on the brink of extinction while leaving other species severely endangered.

“At the root of the rhino crisis is the myth that rhino horn contains curative properties,” he said, adding that World Rhino Day highlighted efforts to debunk the myths and diminish the demand for rhino horn.

World Rhino Day is celebrated on September 22 in support of conservation efforts being undertaken for the conservation of all five species of rhino comprising of black, white, greater one-horned, Sumatran and Javan rhinos.

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