Poaching for rhino horn continues to be an existential threat.
Due to continual poaching and habitat loss, two of the four subspecies of African rhino are now extinct in the wild. Approximately, only 5,300 black rhino and 18,000 southern white rhino remain.
Task Force Rhino supports African wildlife sanctuaries and their grassroots initiatives to monitor, protect and care for rhino populations. Whilst our focus is on the protection of rhino, we are proud that the groups we support also work to protect a rich diversity of threatened species, including pangolin, painted dog, and lappet-faced vultures.
Task Force Rhino was conceived after an initial visit to Zimbabwe to provide tree-climbing training to the Anti-Poaching and Tracking Specialists (ATS) at the Savé Valley.
Anti-poaching & tracking specialists
The tree climbing rangers of Zimbabwe
With over 750,000 acres of protected wildlife habitat, the Savé Valley is home to over 25% of Zimbabwe's critically-endangered black rhino. Despite ongoing poaching threats, the Anti-Poaching and Tracking Specialists (ATS) at the Savé has achieved a steady growth rate in the rhino population. This regeneration program is deemed a monumental success for conservation in Zimbabwe.
ATS have been responsible for the dismantling of many notorious rhino poaching syndicates. Along with a successful intelligence network in the local communities, and a highly-trained team of Belgian Malinois tracking dogs, the rangers have adopted tree-climbing techniques to access the towering local baobabs as elevated lookout points and safe campsites away from nocturnal predators.
Task Force Rhino are currently supporting ATS and their conservation and anti-poaching efforts through local fundraising events.
Task Force Rhino (TFR) was set up as a fundraising venture, to connect Australian and New Zealander arborists with their tree-climbing ranger cousins in Zimbabwe. The founders of TFR are all connected to the Australian arboricultural industry, as business owners, equipment designers and climbers.