Sumatran rhinos must be moved to prevent their extinction

Posted on 10 June 2011  | 
Critically endangered Sumatran rhinos will go extinct if isolated individuals are not brought together, a newly released report by WWF and others says.

There may be as few as 216 Sumatran rhinos remaining, according to a study entitled Now or never: What will it take to save the Sumatran rhinoceros from extinction?.

The authors, including WWF experts, call for translocations of isolated rhinos living in threatened forests to sanctuaries where they can breed with other rhinos.

"Without specific actions to bring Sumatran rhinoceroses together to boost production it is likely that the species will go extinct even if protection of suitable habitat increases," the study says.

To prevent the extinction of the species the writers also highlight the urgent need for greater protection from poaching and increased funding for conservation efforts.

"The prognosis for the survival of the species is not good and the situation will worsen unless there is more political support, better enforcement of wildlife laws, improved cooperation among stakeholders, and funds available [for] conservation," the report concludes.

Sumatran rhinoceros (<i>Dicerorhinus sumatrensis</i>).
Sumatran rhinoceros (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis).
© WWF-Canon / Michel TERRETTAZ Enlarge

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