Spike in rhino killings in Assam heightens concern

A rhinoceros killed at a tea estate near Kaziranga area in Assam. The Indian state is home to the world's largest population of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros.
A rhinoceros killed at a tea estate near Kaziranga area in Assam. The Indian state is home to the world's largest population of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros.PHOTO: SAMSUL HUDA PATGIRI

Poaching numbers lead to study pointing to Chinese demand, renewed call for conservation

Having reported on Assam's wildlife for years, journalist Mrinal Talukdar picked up a suspicious trend while parsing the Indian state's rhinoceros poaching figures.

They had doubled in 2007, from just 10 the year before. This was around the same time when South Africa reported a similar spike in rhino killings, followed by accounts of daring heists of rhino horns from European museums.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 13, 2018, with the headline 'Spike in rhino killings in Assam heightens concern'. Print Edition | Subscribe