+4 votes
Banning trade in horn creates illegal trade. Illegal trade is killing the rhino.
Banning trade in horn is killing the rhino- a fact and a tragic reality. The current international law has created conditions for illegal trade where horn is taken together with a rhino's life. Change the law- Change the future!
Rhino should not be left to join the extinction as we stand by with our arms folded, when there is a viable solution. Legalized trade in horn is a peaceful solution to the rhino poaching crisis. Save the rhino, not the horn. Horn grows back!
-Albina Hume, pro-rhino activist and the Ukrainian Author of a true-life story Miss Fortune.
552 views Jun 29, 2015
Albina Hume 4,650 points
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Margot - your argument that the people in favour of trade are all in it for the money. People who own rhino currently risk the most and are the few who have put their money where their mouths are to protect them. The other point is that many independent experts and specialists are also in favour of saving the rhino by lifting the ban. Most notably Dr Ian Player and a host of others.

Its all the name calling that you have done that has polarised that issue surrounding rhino and its future to the point that people who are trying to save the rhino are divided.

Please see this video...
+6 votes
Jun 29, 2015
Albina Hume 4,650 points
A very informative and educational footage with a clear understanding of the rhino conservation history and the way to go to save the rhino!
Margot Stewart
In the early 1990's two events changed the fate of the rhinos of South Africa.  John Hume arrived here from Zimbabwe where the rhino population had been decimated and the Southern white rhino population of South Africa was down listed from CITES I to CITES II to facilitate trophy hunting and to get a foot in the door for future permission for rhino horn trade.  Thereafter the wildlife trade monitoring organisation TRAFFIC became alarmed at the rampant criminal activity around rhino horn smuggling and recommended a moratorium on internal trade in South Africa.  By then Hume and his investors had began a concerted effort to recruit farmers to get involved in buying and breeding rhinos, all in anticipation of one day getting permission to trade horn!   They accumulated rhinos, and regularly immobilized them with a life-threatening drug solely to harvest the animals horn for stockpiling.  All the while this bogus product has been banned throughout the world and the trade therein is illegal.   Some of these rhino ranchers have been dealing with criminal syndicates such as Vixay Keosavang a Loatian wildlife smuggling kingpin who the FBI has offered a $1 million reward for.  
I don't sympathize with the Hume's.  They allow the trophy hunting of rhinos on their farms.  They accumulated rhinos for the sole purpose of trading in horn one day.  Only two parties want rhino horn trade... rhino ranchers and the international criminal syndicates.  Meanwhile their insistence that the South African Dept. of Environment entertain their call for another (yes their have been several unsuccessful prior) attempt to propose for rhino horn trade at CITES 2016 has distracted the authorities and poaching is now rampant.   Most importantly...  impoverished communities have been corrupted into seeing rhino horn as a get-rich-quick activity.  We need to concentrate on demand control and law enforcement.  ALL talk of trade must be halted and the Southern white should be put back onto CITES Appendix I so that commercial trade will cease.  We should not be allowing the trophy hunting of this endangered species.  A foremost expert on rhinos, Dr. Kobus du Toit has disputed the official population figures and says the population of the Southern white could be half of estimated 20,000.  He says the "guestimate" of 8,000 Southern whites in the Kruger Park is incorrect and it is more like 1,800 to 3,000.  We are losing over 1,000 rhinos a year so why haven't the IUCN made any effort to increase their conservation status  from Near Threatened to Endangered?   
There is only one reason..  they want to trade rhino horn for immense profits.  How can we allow this to cause the extinction of an iconic animal - one of the Big 5 of Africa?
–4 votes
Jun 29, 2015
Albina Hume 4,650 points
A picture can say a thousand words!
When a stranger, who never personally met me or my husband and who declined numerous invitations to come and see our rhino breeding project, where there is NO HUNTING ALLOWED, a stranger who's known well in South Africa for collecting donations on rhino blood, no wonder she'll write some inaccurate information and deliberately will mislead the public. After all, if rhino breeders will stop the poaching crisis and save the rhinos, who will donate to the "professional beggars"?
Someone who gives a toss
1) Who will the horn be sold to
2) How much do you estimate you could sell 1KG of horn
3) What provisions will be put in place to prevent internal corruption
4) How will trade help rhino owners with smaller herds (bearing in mind nothing worth harvesting until a rhino reaches around 10 years old)
5) Who controls market prices and values (government or individual horn sellers)
6) What is the expected net profit percentage per horn sold (after all costs associated including veterinary, management, transportation etc etc have been deducted)
7)  What provisions will be put in place in the anticipation of a surge in demand

Shall I go on?
Kelly Pretorius 880 points
excellent questions!
Kelly Pretorius 880 points

I have decided to give people who love rhino an opportunity to help avoid extinction and in doing so, an opportunity to help themselves. The captive breeding operation I run in the North West Province is almost certainly the best breeding project of rhino in South Africa.

At the end of February 2014, I hope to reach 1000 Rhinos on my North West property. This has been an enormously difficult project and hugely expensive. My running cost has doubled for the last 2 years in succession, mostly because we now have a mini army guarding the rhinos.

The unrelenting increase in pressure from the poachers will now force me to upgrade my rhino security even further and this means a direct and dramatic increase in both running and capital costs. In addition to the massive security cost, I feed my rhinos 3 ton of supplementary feed per rhino per year to keep them in the best possible state of health and breeding – better than the rest of the rhino in the country. I also offer them a vitamin lick all year round.

Notwithstanding the above, I am only scheduled to reach my ambition of breeding 200 rhino calves per year in 3 – 4 year’s time. I simply have to try and breed rhino numbers up to counter the poaching onslaught.

However, I have a problem looming in the near future:
With the huge increase in running costs, I will be forced to start selling rhinos next year which would impact badly on my ambition of breeding 200 rhino calves per year. In fact, with no injection of new capital, even selling all the progeny would not cover the running costs. In essence I know I can breed rhinos successfully but this is a very expensive exercise and it will become more and more expensive as the threat from the poachers grows.

There is a solution to this problem:
This is of course the sale of rhino horn from both our natural mortalities and our production from live rhinos. I have decided that I will offer people the opportunity to invest in the future of rhino at what I consider to be a low price of R100 000 per kilogram of rhino horn (when compared to the black market prices, claimed to be in excess of R500 000 per kilogram)
The structure of this opportunity will be an option to the buyers who, like me, believe in the future of rhino and a well regulated legal trade in rhino horn. They will however only take delivery and ownership of the horn when the sale of rhino horn is legalised
Even though it is a future option it is nevertheless an option on existing horn and therefore the
Buyers will be able to check their future purchase and if they wish, put any signature, demarcation,micro chips, insurance or anything else they wish on the horns and their purchase will be sealed and kept in the same security facility as it is currently stored in.

In other words, ownership of the horn will not change and the buyer will only buy a future right to receive horn, if and when this option can be legally exercised. Only then will they become the owners of the horn.
I will however the be limiting this offer to 500 kilograms of horn
This investment will in fact be a double hedge as it will be in South African Rands and the possible increase in the price of horn will always be in Dollars. The recoupment of the initial investment will also be in Dollars.
Not only will this be a double hedge but the investors will also be contributing to saving the rhino from extinction as their money will be very efficiently used to breed and feed more rhino

In a sincere attempt to motivate people to breed rhino, like I am doing, and if there is no legally permissible trade in rhino horn after a period of 8 years I will deliver to each investor one breeding pair of 3 year old horned rhino in return for each R600 000 of money invested in the future of the species

If the investor does not want to take delivery of rhinos at such date, he/she can leave the rhinos in my care and enter into a joint venture with me whereby I will continue to breed, feed and take care of the rhino and pay all costs involved and we will split 50/50 the horn and progeny born from these rhinos

The continued breeding and care for these animals to secure survival of the species is my passion and I am offering like-minded people the opportunity to share this passion. It is unfortunately fast becoming financially impossible to do so.

John Hume"
Kelly Pretorius 880 points
None of the information that Margot Stewart has given in her comment is incorrect. All of it is fact. And Mrs Hume, you again refer to NGO's who are donating to rhino orphanages and facilities who are helping poached survivors as beggars. You need to stop doing that, it is insulting and puts you in a very very bad light in the public eye. But carry on, you are digging your own grave, without help from anyone else I might add!
Albina Hume 4,650 points
Dear Kelly Pretorius, I have to repeat that Margot Stuart, you and all your members from Save Our Rhino FB page are complete strangers to me, same as I'm complete stranger to you. None of you have ever met me or my husband, yet you do act like an experts of our biographies which are very much incorrect. Also, by twisting words you won't change the reality.
South Africa had a legal national trade in rhino horn for over 30 years, but it was banned 6 years ago for unknown reason. Before banning legal trade in horn, our country had no poaching crisis and there were zero 'rhino' NGOs in the country! Why? Because with legal trade in horn we had no rhino poaching crisis.
Now with legal trade banned, we have open monopoly for illegal trade with over 4000 rhinos poached. At the same time, we've got over 300(!) NGO's collecting donations 'to save the rhino', where 90% of such organizations fight hard against rhino owners, the first people who successfully saved own and wild rhinos in South Africa and who fight poachers on a daily basis with very little help from very few 'rhino' NGOs!
As for me and my husband, while saving successfully for the past 6 years over 1000 rhinos' lives on our own, we received zero assistance from 'rhino' NGOs except constant bulling and aggressive criticism.
As a witness to the safe days for rhinos and to a current poaching crisis, all I see is how various NGOs with thousands of misinformed followers fight hard for keeping conditions in place for illegal trade, which killing rhinos and people in Africa. A tragic reality!