The Last Northern White Male Rhino Has Armed Bodyguards

He’s had his horns shaved down to keep away poachers as well.

Photo by Brent Stirton / Ol Pejeta Conservancy.

Sudan, one of three remaining northern white rhinos left in the world, has a 24-hour armed guard following him around the 90,000-acre Kenyan conservancy where he is currently staying. His personal bodyguards are equipped with night-vision goggles, GPS tracking, and a pack of support and tracking dogs in order to keep the 40-yearold rhino safe from poachers in quest of his sought-after horn. The conservancy is currently running a crowd-funding campaign on GoFundMe to raise money for the round-the-clock protection.

“Protecting these rhinos can be dangerous,” they write on the GoFundMe page. “Poaching attemps in the area are not infrequent and the rangers are the main line of defence between poacher and rhino. Thanks to the efforts of this team, just two rhino have been poached in the last eighteen months and in neither case did the poachers get away with the horn.”

The GoFundMe page also notes that the ebola fear-mongering has kept tourists away from the conservancy—although Kenya has not yet had a single case of the disease—driving down revenue.

They’re hoping Sudan will mate with the other female rhinos he’s living with. In the meantime, they’ve had to take some dire safeguarding measures to keep him safe from the poachers—they’ve shaved off part of his horn.

“If the rhino has no horn, he is of no interest to poachers. This is purely to keep him safe,” said Elodie Sampere to The Dodo.

via David Leavitt / Twitter

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