The intensified slaughter of Botswana rhinos for trinkets and quack medicine could make the beasts extinct by 2021.
So far since April, nine of the animals have been poached, the government announced.
“We have been losing about a rhino a month to poaching,” Mmadi Reuben, with Botswana’s wildlife department, said, according to AFP.
“If the poaching continues at this rate, there will be no rhinos in Botswana in a year or two, especially the black rhino.”
Thousands of the animals once roamed Africa and Asia, but poaching and sprawl have contributed to their demise.
Today, few are found outside national parks and reserves. And even there the rhinos’ safety is threatened.
Rhino Conservation Botswana said there are around 400 rhinos in the southern African country. But the onslaught against them continues.
Two rhinos were poached within five days in late September.
According to AFP, southern white rhinos have been brought back from the bring of extinction but their black cousins are considered critically endangered with just 4,200 in the wild.