Rhino and elephant poaching is significantly down in Namibia, according to data from the country’s Ministry of Environment and Tourism. So far in 2021, hunters have illegally killed nine rhinos, an eight-year low, and four elephants, a five-year low, Reuters reported.
Rhino poaching peaked in 2015 with 97 killings, while elephant poaching peaked in 2016 with 101 killings. Poaching numbers have been trending downwards since then, allowing black rhinos to make a return in Namibia. The government attributed its recent success to greater enforcement, as well as larger fines and longer prison sentences for offenders, Reuters reported.
Namibia boasts a larger population of white rhinos than any nation except South Africa, and it is home to a third of all remaining black rhinos, including 200 free-roaming black rhinos. Namibia has the only free-roaming black rhinos left in the world.