Something very special happened the night riders gathered at Ant’s Nest in South Africa on the eve of The Waterberg Trust Challenge Ride this January.
We were having a drink out on Ant’s Nest game reserve when some local residents approached us:
Five white rhino emerged from the bush at the same time as six members of the team arrived on horseback, led by Ant Baber.
It was as if the rhinos were coming to thank us for raising funds to assure their security.
Ant Baber approached the animals to assure them all was well.
And as the sun went down we were able to observe the rhinos in their natural habitat.
They are docile animals, sadly under threat as markets in the Far East place a high value their horn – even though it is no more than keratin, akin to human fingernails.
Please read more about Save The Waterberg Rhino, here
To find out about other projects supported by The Waterberg Trust Challenge Ride, please click here
~Riders taking part in The Waterberg Trust Challenge Ride 2018~
Anne Lester, who came on The Waterberg Challenge Ride in South Africa this March, has just sent in some of the photographs she took of wildlife encountered on horseback.
We rode close to giraffe, and were able to watch a group of eleven browsing.
This is a breeding herd of rare Livingstone eland, the largest antelope species found in South Africa. We also spotted waterbuck, kudu, nyala, grey duiker, sable, roan, blessbok, oryx, red heartebeest and numerous herds of impala.
You can see how close we were able to get to animals on Ant’s Nest game reserve, a sanctuary for white rhino. Poaching in South Africa has become such a threat that these rhinoceros have had their horns impregnated with poison so they have no market value.
The rhinos are accompanied by armed guards 24 hours a day. This is expensive but meant that the animals are well habituated to horses and we managed to get very close.
The good news is that the rhino are breeding well and are in good condition. This calf was born two months ago after a two-year birthing interval.
We are currently fund-raising for Save The Waterberg Rhino who are striving to protect this special area as well as organising community projects so that local children can learn about the importance of nature conservation and ecology. If you can help, please go to The Waterberg Trust Justgiving.com page here. We have a Facebook page here.