Prince Harry has been outspoken about his involvement in the anti-poaching movement, but on a recent trip to Africa, the 31-year-old was overcome with emotions, regarding the senseless killing of animals.
The royal, who spent three months over summer working as a wildlife conservation volunteer, released a series of personal photographs and videos to bring to light, the very real threat facing elephants and rhinos in South Africa.
Personally captioning each photograph, Harry was attempting to comment on his own heartbreaking experiences during his visit.
On one of the trips through Kruger National Park, Harry came across the carcass of a female white rhino and her calf.
“This belongs to South Africa and it’s been stolen by other people,” Harry said of the rhinos,
“And the body’s left here, wasted.”
“We find this often,” Major-General Johan Jooste told media present in a recorded video. “The mother was probably killed first. The baby will always come back to the mother so when it came close it would have been killed also.
“When it’s a small calf, they often hack it to death with pangas [machetes] to avoid making a noise by shooting but this calf was shot too.”
In a speech given at the park, Harry expressed his frustration with the ongoing practice of illegal poaching and thanked the rangers who spend their lives attempting to protect the wildlife.
“There is no pretending that any of this will be easy,” the prince said.
“It won’t be. But when we win this battle and reverse the rise in poaching, the victory will belong first and foremost to those on the frontiers.”
“I know how lucky I am to have these experiences, but hearing stories from people on the ground about how bad the situation really is upset and frustrated me,” he captioned the photo.
“How can it be that 30,000 elephants were slaughtered last year alone?”
Learn more at www.savetherhino.org.
Prince Harry has released this personal video taken during his summer visit to southern Africa. Here Prince Harry shares his story behind the video… “These baby rhinos are at an orphanage because their mothers were killed by poachers. I can’t say where this is for obvious reasons. But I spent an afternoon with Petronel Nieuwoubt who runs the orphanage. The youngest rhino was called Don. He was just two months old when he was found in Kruger National Park. Petronel has students and volunteers from all over the world come to look after these orphans. They pay for this experience and that money is used for milk, food, fencing and rangers for security.” For more information go to: www.careforwild.co.za Video ©Prince Harry
Prince Harry has released this personal photo taken during his summer visit to southern Africa. Here Prince Harry shares his story behind the photograph… “By this point many people will have heard of ‘Hope’, a young female black rhino that was brutally wounded by poachers in the Eastern Cape of South Africa. This was the second operation to try to save this animal’s life. Some poachers use a dart gun and tranquilize the animal so as to not have to fire a shot that would be heard. They then hack their face off while the animal is paralysed before running off with the horn. Local communities saw her stumbling through the bush and then alerted the authorities. Thanks to Dr William Fowlds and his team, Hope survived and is making a speedy recovery. I stared into her eyes while operating on her and thought at first that it would have been better and fairer to put her down rather than put her through the pain. Afterwards I was told of another female called Thandi who was in a similar state in 2012. She now has a baby calf called Thembi.” Every single rhino matters. If you want to help have a look at: www.wildernessFoundation.co.za Photograph ©Prince Harry
Prince Harry has released this personal photo taken during his summer visit to southern Africa. Here Prince Harry shares his story behind the photograph… “I was working with Dr. Mark Jago and Dr. Pete Morkel in Namibia. Some countries are de-horning small populations of rhino to deter poachers from shooting them. It is a short-term solution and surely no substitute for professional and well-trained rangers protecting these highly sought-after animals. De-horning has to be done every two years for it to be effective and can only realistically be done with small populations in open bush. My initial task each time was to monitor the heart rate and oxygen levels and help stabilise them as quickly as possible. My responsibilities then grew to taking blood and tissue samples and the de-horning itself.” You can learn more and how to help by visiting: https://www.savetherhino.org/africa_programmes/save_the_rhino_trust_namibia Photograph © Prince Harry