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Rhino Fund Uganda Raft Race 2011

By The Eye

Due to the civil unrest in the 1970’s, rhinos were poached to extinction in Uganda by 1983.

Rhino horns fetch a high price on world markets where they are sold to be made mostly into Traditional Chinese medicines sold throughout China and Asia and ceremonial dagger handles in Yemen. It is not true, as recently claimed, that rhino horn medicine is a cure for cancer.

Rhino Fund Uganda (RFU) was established in 1997 to lead, in collaboration with communities and with the Government Institutions responsible for wildlife, the re-introduction of rhinos back into Uganda. In 2001, the first two white rhinos were moved into the Uganda Wildlife Education Centre in Entebbe as the first phase of the project – to raise awareness and for education.

In 2004, RFU completed the establishment of this sanctuary, Ziwa, for phase 2 – the breeding of Rhinoceros. Four white rhinos were trans-located from Solio Ranch in Kenya in July 2005. Two more white rhinos were offered as a donation by Disney Animal Kingdom in Orlando, Florida, and arrived at our sanctuary in October 2006. This founder group of three males and three females soon settled and all three females subsequently have each produced a calf or more.

Today there are 10 rhino on the sanctuary of which 3 are young bulls and 1 a five month old female born on Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary. Negotiations are underway to import another 6 adult females from North West Parks in South Africa and they are hoping that the negotiations reach finality soon so that these females can be imported during December 2011.

After a viable population of over 30 individuals is bred on the sanctuary, and provided the safety situation on the parks is secure, a founder group of rhinos will be released in their original habitat, most likely in Murchison Falls National Park.

ZIWA RHINO SANCTUARY FACTS

? The first four rhinos from Kenya were: Taleo (m), Moja (m), Bella (f) and Kori (f).
The two rhinos from the USA were: Hassani (m) and Nandi (f). At the start of 2011, they were all around 11 years old

? Obama was the first rhino born on the sanctuary to mother Nandi on the 24th June 2009. This was a Historic event as Obama was the first rhino calf born in Uganda in at least 28 years! Nandi continued to make history when she gave birth to the first female calf born in Uganda in over 35 years on 4th June 2011. This calf was named Malaika.

? Bella had a male calf, who was named Augustu by Augsburg Zoo in Germany, in October 2009. Bella is due to calf again during the next month

? Kori had a male calf who was named Justice by a donor who wishes to remain anonymous, in January 2010. Kori is due to calf again during January 2012.

? The ZIWA rhinos are the only wild rhinos in Uganda

? ZIWA identify their rhinos by their sex and age, the shape of their horns and the notches put in their ears. Your ranger guide will tell you which rhino is which.

? Armed Rangers visually observe the rhinos every hour of the day and night, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This is possible because we have no predators unlike most other rhino conservation areas. Behavioral data is collected every hour and, after analysis, they are able to assist the management of other rhino sanctuaries with information, especially about night activity, never before collected in the wild.

? As there are no other animals dangerous to humans in ZIWA, you are able to approach the rhinos on foot but must remain at a safe distance as the animals are wild. Your guide and other rangers are armed in case they unexpectedly encounter a poacher.

? The 70 sq km sanctuary has a solar powered, electrified perimeter fence.

? There is also an education and community program which covers different age groups and aimed at the urgent need to conserve this rare species, the value of biodiversity in Uganda, the rhinos place in local and global ecosystems, the impact of conservation on the community and the importance of conservation efforts worldwide. ZIWA are also proud to announce that during 2012 they opened their very own pre-primary school. This school is called Hakuna Matata Daycare Centre and the children have a uniform of bright orange and yellow. Most of the children that attend Hakuna Matata are the young ones of the staff working on the sanctuary. There are a few children from outside the sanctuary that also attend.

? Approximately 60% of the education and law enforcement staff are community members

Rhino Fund Raft Race 2011
Together with Nile River Explorers a unique rafting fundraising day was held on 24 September 2011 at Explorers River Camp, Bujagali Falls, Jinja (the third annual event of its kind) in support of the Rhinos. This year 20,000,000 Ush was raised for the sanctuary.
It was a fun-filled day of rafting and mingling and while there were a few teams that went all-out to win, there were also a number of teams who took things a little less seriously and just went with the flow (literally).
The turn out on the day was amazing (again) with 18 Teams having participated in the event.
The Peace Corps Team won the event in a record breaking time of 22.37.61, Rhino Rangers came in second with a time of 23.19.31 and K’Jong in third place in 23.54.06.

The format for the day:
Teams of 6 people racing from below the dam wall to Explorers River Camp just above the Bujagali Falls. Apart from the teams of 6 there was also an opportunity for 2 man rafts to enter in the extreme racing category.

The teams that participated were:
Ascot Ladies, Soft Power Education, Soft Power Health, The Eye, Rhino Rangers, Coca-Cola 1, Coca-Cola 2, Brew Masters, K’Jong, Saracen, Volcanoes, Easy Club, UWEC, UWA, Ngamba Island, Go Wild and Bujagali Speed, Peace Corps,

A big thank you must go to all of the sponsors who so generously supported this event, they were:
Nile Breweries, Media Moguls, Rwenzori Water, Coca Cola, Shoprite, Meat Market, GraphiConsult, Ngamba Island, Orange Telecom, UWEC Zoo, Amuka Lodge, Andy Gooch, All Terrain Adventures, Nile River Explorers, Kayak the Nile, Gorilla Jet, The Haven, Rhino Fund Uganda, Emin Pasha, Sipi River Lodge, Kyaninga Lodge, Holland Park, Nile Horseback Safaris, Banana Boat, Andy Roberts, The Hairy Lemon, Red Chilli Murchison Falls, Bubble’s O’Leary, Café Roma, GeoLodges, 2 Friends, Volcanoes Safaris, The Eye, Game, 2 Man, Mezzanine Bar & Restaurant, Get Framed and Great Lakes.

Your visit to Ziwa Rhino Sanctuary is a VITAL part in the success of the breeding program while also supporting their education and awareness program.

For more information, please contact:
Rhino Fund Uganda
Mobile: +256 772 71 3410
Email: angie@rhinofund.org. Website: www.rhinofund.org
Facebook: Rhino Fund Uganda