Fall 2002

Photographer Nigel Dennis (africaimagery.com)
Volume
51
Number
4
About the Cover

White rhinos tend to be creatures of habit. This individual drank at the same waterhole at around 3:30 every afternoon. Photographer Nigel Dennis (http://africaimagery.com) would park close to the waterhole at 3pm and not have long to wait before the rhino put in an appearance. On hot days the rhino would often wallow in the muddy margins of the pool- a useful way to get rid of ticks and other skin parasites and, of course, cool off. Five species of rhinoceros survive perilously across the globe: in Asia, the Javan rhino, Sumatran rhino, and Indian rhino have an estimated combined population of fewer than 3,000 animals; in Africa, white and black rhinos remain only slightly less critical. Historically, rhinos have been under great pressure from poaching for the trade in their parts, especially their valuable horns, which are ground into a fine powder and used in traditional Asian medicines. Rhino horn is also used as a decorative dagger handle, produced for centuries in Yemen and elsewhere.