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A Horrific Tale of Rhino Poaching Turned Into a Story of Hope.

October 24, 2014 Responsible Tourism No Comments Email Email

Since 30 August 2013 HESC has provided a sanctuary for two surviving poached rhinos, Dingle Dell and Lion’s Den. Since then we have watched as the horrific tale of rhino poaching turned into a story of hope.

Dr Gerhard Steenkamp, a well-known veterinary specialist and Dr Peter Rogers, a local wildlife veterinarian, have been there to help treat their wounds.

For a long time we have been struggling to see some kind of progress in the healing of Lion’s Den’s wound, while Dingle Dell’s wound healed quickly. Unfortunately, because the poachers cut right into Lion Den’s sinus canals, nasal epithelium is pushing up and preventing the growth of healthy granulation tissue. This has caused a hole that we have been struggling to close. However, we now have some really good news.

On 24 September, we noticed once again that Lion’s Den’s cast was damaged, and we quickly called out our veterinary team. Lion’s Dell was darted and came down in an open area in her camp where we began to work quickly. The cast was removed and the wound was cleaned so that we could properly inspect it. Her wound was treated and a new cast was applied. Thankfully we noticed a definite improvement. Although not a huge improvement, we are still excited to finally see her wound beginning to heal. We hope that one of these days we will be able to leave her cast off completely!

Gertjie, whose mum was a victim to poaching, is settling in nicely at HESC. Our road to find a companion animal for Gertjie has not gone as smoothly as we had hoped. Companion animals are important for orphans like Gertjie, as they not only provide companionship, they also minimise human interaction.

However, on 4 August 2014, a 3-week-old Pedi lamb named Lammie arrived at HESC. We carefully introduced her to Gertjie, immediately Lammie decided that she would much rather hide behind Gertjie than us.

Lammie has been here for a while now, and has become a regular fixture. Wherever there’s Gertjie, there’s Lammie following close behind. Welcome to our family Lammie!

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