Thandi is a walking miracle who truly should not be here. In 2012, she and two male Rhinos were viciously attacked and poached, leaving them in a pool of blood. When found, one male had already died and rescuers were not sure they would be able to save the remaining male or Thandi. Unfortunately, after three weeks of care, the male fell victim to his brutal attack and took one last drink from the pool of water. The sheer sadness the rescuer felt after this death would break down the coldest of hearts!
Fortunately, Thandi was a survivor and was able to overcome her mortal wound and go on living. As rescuers continued to help her, she slowly recovered, touching lives all over the world.
Nearly three years after surviving the brutal poaching Thandi gave birth to a calf on 13 January 2015 at Kariega Game Reserve in the Eastern Cape, South Africa.
A Rhino as symbolically special as this one deserved a name to match, and the little calf has just been given a very fitting moniker: ‘Thembi’, which means ‘hope’ in the Xhosa language, one of the official languages of South Africa.
“The name Thembi seemed to fit best given that this little calf has brought fresh hope and
energy to those who struggle to secure the future of our Rhino. She is a new generation of life, one I hope will never experience a poaching incident like her mother did” says Dr William Fowlds, one of the vets involved in Thandi’s incredible recovery.
He adds: “Thandi has changed my life. I can’t say it is for the better, as I could never wish to fight a war such as this one but she has inspired action in myself, and many around me. She now celebrates life, and with it the hope that against all odds, we can and we will overcome the massive challenges that threaten the Rhino.”
With footage of Thandi and her calf captured moments after the birth, this film by photographer and filmmaker Adrian Steirn documents Thandi’s journey from attack to recovery. This is story of the Rhino that should never have been born.
Thandi’s Calf: The Rhino That Should Never Have Been Born: https://youtu.be/oGDQPOJ9Luw
Rhino Horn Is Not Medicine: https://youtu.be/SWtPiBcRrVc
Kariega Game Reserve: http://www.kariega.co.za/
Dr William Fowlds Info: http://www.medivet.co.uk/news/medivet-rhino/dr-william-fowlds/
Adrian Steirn Info: http://www.adriansteirn.com/
Forever Wild Rhino Protection Initiative: http://www.wildernessfoundation.co.za/projects/forever-wild-rhino-protection-initiative
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