Saturday, June 26, 2004

Go for four: some news just to feel good

In the face of famine, war, torture, and the possibility of environmental catastrophe in the next several decades, it may not seem important. Still, it made me smile. From the BBC for June 24:
Numbers of African black rhinos are rising in the wild, conservationists say, suggesting the endangered animals could be on the road to recovery.

New figures put the current number of black rhinoceroses at 3,600, a rise of 500 animals over the last two years. ...

The black rhino suffered a near-catastrophic decline from about 65,000 animals in the 1970s to only 2,400 in the mid-1990s.

But the continuing rise in black rhinos since the mid-1990s is encouraging, say the conservation groups behind the new estimates. ...

The number of white rhinos, which had fallen to just 50 individuals one hundred years ago, now stand at 11,000 and appear stable.
The article also notes that two rhino sub-species still stand on the brink of extinction, with a single population of 20 northern white rhinos and only a few western black rhinos thought to remain. Still,
"[d]espite threats like poaching and habitat destruction rhino numbers are moving away from the brink of extinction," said Callum Rankine, WWF's [World Wildlife Fund] international species officer for the UK.
So go ahead and smile.

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