Aquila opens Western Cape rhino orphanage

Aquila Private Game Reserve has opened its doors to any rhinos needing assistance.

Nearly 14 months ago, Aquila took on the task of raising and rehabilitating an orphaned rhino calf. Over the months that followed, the team faced and overcame many obstacles and challenges that came with hand-rearing a wild animal. Searl Derman, owner of Aquila said, “It has been a thrill to watch this little rhino grow into the magnificent animal we now know as Osita.”

Aquila says the Western Cape, with its wide open spaces, give little cover to the criminal with no snares or opportunistic poaching and with the experience gained and infrastructure set up for Osita, it seemed that the only natural progression would be to open its doors to any rhinos needing assistance.

“We now have the facilities to raise orphaned rhinos in a safe and secure environment with highly experienced staff to give these orphans the best chance possible. Animal companionship for baby rhinos is imperative and the ideal companion would be another rhino. Armed with these facilities and knowledge, Aquila started to put out feelers for any baby rhinos that might find themselves orphaned and in need of immediate help. Aquila has been approached to assist with four orphans to date, who are currently being stabilised prior to transportation,” said a statement by Aquila.

In the interests of the rhinos’ rehabilitation and security, the orphanage will not be open to the public and is being funded through the NGO “Saving Private Rhino” and Aquila, with the hope of further funding from corporate and private donations and an active volunteer programme.