As 2021 draws to a close, we thank you for being a part of our crusade for animals and the planet. All around the globe, wildlife is in peril. Terrible droughts, rampant poaching and the frightening loss of critical habitats are driving threatened species towards extinction.
Yet we at Animal Survival International (ASI) have hope. Thanks to your unwavering support, ASI provided its record-breaking levels of aid to wildlife in 2021, and we are determined to do even more in 2022! Thousands of animals are alive today thanks to your generous donations and passionate assistance in raising awareness of the issues at the heart of our planet’s decline.
Here’s how your donations made a difference to animals in December:
Orphaned Baby Rhino Emergency in South Africa
In South Africa’s Mpumalanga region, the scourge of rhino poaching has exploded. In just one week, our team was asked to help four orphaned baby rhinos whose mothers have been killed.
One calf was found motionless next to the mutilated carcass of her mother - she was so close to death that she had to be medevacked by helicopter during a violent storm that was so unusually bad that the finger was pointed at climate change. She was so weak that the veterinary team started treatment on the helipad as soon as they landed.
All four of these baby rhinos need intensive and costly medical treatment, specialized food and around-the-clock care if they are to have a chance of surviving and returning to the wild. We reached out to you for emergency support to provide this help, and you responded generously! Our work for these rhinos continues, but thanks to you, all four orphaned baby rhinos will have a second chance at life.
Zimbabwean Anti-Poaching Unit Dead in the Water
The Bumi Hills Anti-Poaching Unit (BHAPU) is a small but highly skilled and dedicated team of individuals who put their lives on the line to protect the last of Zimbabwe’s lake elephants. Unfortunately, BHAPU’s anti-poaching boat - which facilitates 65% of its arrests - was in dire need of repair. With its boat out of commission, poachers could take advantage of a massive swath of unprotected lakeshore, putting the elephants’ lives immediately at risk.
Thanks to your support, we were able to cover the costs of a new fiberglass hull for the vessel, and the BHAPU team will once again hold the line on Lake Kariba and keep the lake elephants safe from poachers.
Life-saving Water for Baby Elephants of Addo National Park in South Africa
In November, we asked for your support to bring water to the animals of Addo National Park in South Africa, where the worst drought in almost 100 years continues to rage. Earlier this year, ASI installed four state-of-the-art solar-powered water systems to provide water to the elephants of Addo, but the threat is still deadly. Summer has arrived, which means birthing season is upon us and thousands of animals have babies. The biggest and strongest animals dominate the waterholes, leaving baby animals little chance of accessing life-saving water.
Thanks to your swift and generous response, we were able to provide two more waterhole systems in critical areas. Now, with less pressure on existing waterholes, mother elephants, zebras, warthogs and more, as well as their babies, have access to cool, clean, fresh water.
Baby Barn Owl Rehabilitation in South Africa
In South Africa’s St Helena Bay, birds of prey are being killed at a shocking rate because of cultural beliefs that they are harbingers of death. Seven baby barn owls were rescued from their nest after their parents mysteriously disappeared. We called on you for help and thanks to your donations, we were able to provide the funds needed for medical care and rehabilitation so that these seven barn owls can one day help the dwindling population recover.
Baby Zebra’s Miracle Survival in South Africa
Violent storms, likely driven by climate change, separated a baby zebra from its herd. Terrified, starving and alone, the exhausted foal dragged herself under a bush for safety and was luckily found by an anti-poaching unit on patrol. It was a miracle she survived. She was rushed to the Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary (CFW) where the team discovered that she urgently needed a blood transfusion. We rushed funds for the life-saving procedure, and it was a success!
Named ‘Modjadji’ after the rain goddess, the little foal still needs weeks of care to regain her strength before she can start her rehabilitation and be released back into the wild to join a new herd. Thanks to your kind donations, the CFW team now has the funds to ensure that little Modjadji gets the best possible care.
Lily the Pangolin’s Long Road to Recovery in South Africa
Every species of pangolin is at risk of extinction because of the international illegal trade in pangolin parts for traditional ‘medicines’ and status meals. They are the most trafficked mammal in the world. Of all the pangolins ASI has helped rescue and rehabilitate, none had such an horrific journey as Lily, a pregnant pangolin on the verge of death who was saved from wildlife traffickers in South Africa.
A few weeks ago, Lily’s red blood cell count plummeted, and she became dangerously anemic. Thanks to your donations, ASI was able to fund an emergency blood transfusion that saved her life. Sadly, Lily lost her unborn baby, but she is recovering well and should be able to see future pregnancies through successfully. As of a few days ago, Lily is back on her feet and slowly beginning to naturally forage for ants again. We continue to monitor her recovery and look forward to the day when she returns to the wild.
Credits: Banner, image 1 & 5: Care For Wild Rhino Sanctuary; Image 4: The Owl Orphanage; Image 2 & 3: Animal Survival International; Image 6: Umoya Khulula Wildlife Centre