The Controversial Policy That Has Eliminated Rhino Poaching

April 28, 2020

Credit: David Gray / Getty Images News


In India, where rhino poaching has long been a problem due to the value on the black market of the animal's horn, put a policy in place several years ago that not everyone agreed with. Poachers can be shot on sight; no arrests, no due process. If the park rangers suspect someone is a poacher, they can simply shoot them, no questions asked. The result has been great for the rhino. For the first time, rhinocerous poaching in that country has become non existent. In fact, more poachers were killed by game wardens than rhinos by poachers.

The "shoot on sight" policy has resulted in rhinos now thriving in India's national parks. The government defends this policy by pointing out that local crime syndicates are frequently involved in the illegal wildlife trade and escalate the situation in ways that could cost lives.