(WILDLIFE/RHINOS) Just three years ago in South Africa, three wild rhinos were involved in a horrendous poaching incident, leaving one of the group members dead, and two seriously injured.

Thankfully, Dr. William Fowlds, a vet who is dedicated to helping the species survive in the wild, came upon the two rhinos, Thandi and Themba, after the brutal act and tended to their wounds.

Thandi the day after the attack that left her with terrible injuries. Photo Credit: Dr Will Fowlds
Thandi the day after the attack that left her with terrible injuries. Photo Credit: Dr Will Fowlds

Despite Dr. Fowlds and his team’s efforts, Themba’s wounds were far too great, and she was unable to survive. However, Themba’s herd member Thandi was able to push through against all odds.

After numerous operations, including a pioneering skin graft surgery, Thandi was able to heal and go back to her days of wandering in the safety of Kariega Game Reserve.

Miraculously, on Jan. 13, 2015, Thandi, the poaching survivor, was blessed with a calf.

The veterinary staff at Kariega Game Reserve watched the birth from a distance and confirmed that the new mom and her baby were doing wonderfully.

“I am sure that the whole rhino caring community will share in the joy of this amazing birth,” Fowlds said.

“Thandi’s story has always been an incredible testimony of the will to survive against all odds. She represents so much of what her species faces under the current poaching crisis.”

To ensure their safety, Kariega Game Reserve designated the area in which the newborn calf and her mother live as off-limits to park-goers.

Since that fateful day in South Africa, Thandi has been a symbol of hope for animal activists around the world, who are fighting to put an end to rhino poaching once and for all.

TAKE ACTIONClick here to see how you can help Kariega Game Reserve’s efforts in caring for Thandi and protecting all rhinos!

— Sabrina Clinkenbeard, exclusive to Global Animal

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