Returning rhino to Rwanda

This historic translocation of 18 black rhino, marked the return of the species to Rwanda after a 10-year absence


African Parks; andBeyond; the Rwandan Development Board and with the funding provided by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation


This translocation marked the return of Eastern black rhinos to Rwanda, after the last individual was documented in the country 10 years ago – a historic move for the nation and the species. In this cross-continent journey of over 4000km, a founder population of 18 Eastern black rhinoceroses were translocated from Thaba Tholo South Africa to Akagera National Park in Rwanda.

Back in the 1970s, more than 50 black rhinos thrived in Akagera National Park, but their numbers declined under the pressure of wide-scale poaching until the last confirmed sighting of the species in 2007. The park, which is a protected savannah habitat in Rwanda, has undergone a remarkable transformation since African Parks assumed management in 2010 in partnership with the Rwanda Development Board.    

Since 2010, African Parks has overhauled law enforcement in the park, reducing poaching to an all-time low and today the park is flourishing. Security measures have been implemented specifically to ensure the safety and well-being of the rhinos once in the park.  

With fewer than 5,000 black rhino remaining across their range in the wild, of which approximately 1,000 are the Eastern black rhino subspecies, this reintroduction is an urgent, progressive, and valuable opportunity for their conservation, and serves as a story of hope for the species.

Watch their story here...