NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
The Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) on Thursday
displayed 18 horns of nine black rhinos which died last week after
a failed relocation from Nairobi and Nakuru National Parks to
Tsavo East Sanctuary.
Najib Balala, the cabinet
secretary for tourism and wildlife, had earlier authorized the
parading of the horns implanted with micro-chips as a gesture of
transparency amid concerns over the sudden death of the iconic
"There is a protocol of transporting ivory from one station
to another and I have directed Kenya Wildlife Service to display
them for verification by the media and members of the public,"
"Fortunately, all the horns have electronic chips and
transmitters and it is possible to verify whether they belong to
the rhinos that died," he added.
The death of nine black rhinos at a sanctuary in the
expansive Tsavo East National Park caused consternation in the
local and global wildlife conservation fraternity.
So far, only two out of the 11 rhinos that were translocated
to the wildlife sanctuary have survived while a multi-agency
team has been formed to establish the cause of their sudden
Scientists from KWS had earlier intimated that the rhinos
died as a result of severe dehydration after they consumed
borehole water that was too saline.
Balala ordered a halt on translocation of rhinos that was
being undertaken by KWS in partnership with World Wide Fund for
Nature (WWF) until the cause of the deaths was resolved.
Linus Kariuki, coordinator of rhino program at the KWS, said
the use of micro-chips to monitor the movement of giant land
mammals like rhinos has boosted their protection amid threat of
"By implanting a micro-chip on the rhino horns, it is
possible to track their movement and obtain critical details
like gender and age," Kariuki said.
Kenya’s rhino population that is currently estimated at 1,200
is facing threats linked to poaching, shrinking habitat and
Eight rare Black Rhino reported dead in Tsavo East National Park