Dr Jana Pretorius, is the founder of the Rhino Pride Foundation.
She is a specialist wildlife veterinarian, with a graduate diploma in forensic science. She has had many years of experience in the capture, care, and relocation of wildlife. Hand-rearing Ronnie, an orphaned white rhino calf, was the catalyst for the creation of RPF (2015) alongside the horrific escalation in rhino poaching. It was through Ronnie that Jana learned how gentle and affectionate rhinos are. They suffer deep separation anxiety and grief from the loss of a companion, and young animals often die from stress.
Through her work on a UN project and involvement with multiple non profits, Jana realized the desperate need to create high security sanctuaries. Her idea is to protect the rhino in a proactive manner, minimizing loss of life. Jana believes it is essential to minimize human contact with rhinos to maintain their wild nature.
Volunteers are not allowed and the staff who take care of the rhinos have remained the same for many years. The idea that rhinos should live and breed as wild rhinos is central to her philosophy.
RPFs mission is to develop sustainable solutions to aid, rescue and protect rhinos and other endangered species.
Goals for 2017/18
Completing security at the RPF Rhino Sanctuary
Developing a Northern White Rhino breeding center
Filming an educational documentary, creating global exposure, titled “I am Rhino.”
Trustee Dr Liesel Trollope, a veterinary surgeon, joined the Foundation in 2015.
RPF Rhino Sanctuary: Dr Jana Pretorius provides veterinary services to Thaba Manzi, whose property in Limpopo comprises big holding camps and bomas . They provide a sanctuary for 44 rhinos. RPF partnered with them to raise funds to properly secure the property.
Monthly anti-poaching patrols
Bullet proof vests with tracking devices
Adult rhino food
Milk for orphan rhinos (currently 4)
Expansion of the current RPF sanctuary is being explored. The adjacent 100 hectare property would be ideal and this would need the same layered security.
Northern White Rhino breeding Project
Only 3 Northern White Rhinos remain in the world. RPF is working with Embryo Plus, pioneers in reproductive techniques in Africa, Thaba Manzi and San Diego Zoo to use Southern White Rhinos as surrogates for breeding Northern White Rhinos. Expansion of RPF as it stands will include an endangered species breeding center.
Envisioning a future for rhinos
RPF envisions the development of high security rhino protection zones with a possible location on the Northern Cape. This 100,000 hectares will ensure natural biodiversity, will be self-sustaining and support rhino and other wildlife in a natural environment.