Joelle, Elvis, Malawi discussed on Monocle 24: The Foreign Desk


Logistically, you need reserve permits for both areas where the rhinos are going from and going to the government official will have to be present whenever you're moving animals or animal products from one place to another. You have to have an official from the government or nature conservation. And then the relevant parties could be helicopter pilots between pilots to help locate the animal. If there's a research team on the ground, they might be involved, the veterinarian, because the animal is chemically immobilized during the loading and then everybody that needs to be on the ground on the other side. So rhinos are incredibly different to say pangolin and we work with both, but it does have to be organized in advanced and based on the weather as well. You don't want to have high temperatures when you're transporting these animals, especially for long distances. So you have to take a lot into account. We were actually only involved in transporting animals short distances. So I've only personally ever used trucks except one instance where an orphaned rhino was brought in via which I know doctor Elvis was invoked in recently as well. So I think every veterinarian has different drug combinations and everything varies from situation to situation. But personally, I only am involved with the trucking side of things. I'll put that one across to you, Joelle, because the idea of rhinoceros and aircraft seems such a counterintuitive combination. How do you actually do it? So essentially, a very big aircraft first of all, and I'm really strong crates. So it's really in the cargo hold of any of these big aircraft. So it just depending on the size and the scope of the project, you're moving one or two rhino, you can fit it in a much smaller aircraft in terms of the cargo hold, but for some of these operations like the black runner that went across to Malawi, you're talking quite a number of crates. They need to fit inside there. So it's really not rocket science in that sense. You obviously got a live animal but much the same as you transport anything in the cargo hold of a plane around it would be the same. They tranquilized and sedated to a certain level for the duration of the trip, just to obviously minimize stress as much as possible..

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