South Africa: Clover assists in taking care for orphaned rhino calves

by Aug 6, 2012Rhinos, Wildlife News

Clover South Africa shows its support for the fight against rhino poaching by donating Clover Skim MilkPowder to Elandela Rhino Survivor Trust to help rehabilitate two rhino orphans.

South Africa’s ongoing plight with rhino poaching continues to make headlines around the world. By some estimates, as many as 448 rhinos were killed in 2011. This number is higher than the 2010 figure of 333 reported by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA). In the first half of 2012, it is estimated that some 211 rhinos have already been targeted and if trends continue, experts predict that South Africa’s rhino population may start reducing drastically from 2015.

Protecting our rhinos is critical especially as the South African National Parks CEO, David Mabunda, recently revealed that our country is home to around 80 percent of the world’s remaining population. Rhinos also comprise one of South Africa’s world-famous Big Five and the DEA has affirmed that it is committed to fighting the illegal killing of rhinos as well as prosecuting all cases of illegal killing and the illegal trade in rhino horn.

Many concerned members of the public and local companies like Clover have joined the fight to defend these precious iconic animals. One important part of protecting our rhinos and ensuring their survival for generations to come is the care of calves orphaned by poachers.”The rhino in South Africa are under threat more than ever before. As a truly South African company Clover will do what it can to save the rhino population for our children,” explains Dr Chris Lerm, Executive Brands and Marketing at Clover.

This is why Clover has partnered with the Elandela Rhino Survivor Trust on the Elandela Private Game Reserve in Limpopo Province and pledged sponsorship of Clover Skim Milk Powder to feed the trust’s white rhino orphans, Roccy and Clova.

Comments Lerm,”Clover decided to help Elandela to cover the cost of feeding these rhino orphans by providing them with the next best food after mother’s milk. In this way Clover wishes to give them a WAY BETTER start to life and to support Elandela in the wonderful work they are doing.”

Roccy was orphaned in June 2011 when poachers killed his mother on the Elandela reserve. Hard hit by the tragedy, reserve owners Yvonne and Rocco Gioia founded the Elandela Rhino Survivor Trust to care for and rehabilitate Roccy until he is old enough to be released back onto the reserve.

Sadly during a flyover in December 2011 to investigate poaching activity in the area, an Mpumalanga Parks Board official found Clova on a nearby reserve close to the remains of her mother. Because of their success with Roccy, Clova was moved from this reserve to join Roccy at Elandela, where Yvonne, Rocco and their devoted team lovingly care for the two calves.

Looking after hungry baby rhinos is no small feat as at a starting weight of 300kg, they need lots of healthy food to sustain their growth. The calves are fed six times a day with a combination of Clover Skim Milk Powder and fortified cereal to ensure they stay hydrated and receive all the nutrients they need for healthy growth. They are fed like this for 18 months until they are weaned.

Feeding a rhino is only part of rehabilitating them before they’re released onto the Elandela reserve. They are also given lots of TLC from Yvonne, Rocco and the team: “Rhino orphans need lots of love,” she comments. “A young orphan rhino such as this is a huge responsibility and attention and devotion must be heaped on it in order to ensure a positive outcome.”

Thanks to the support of sponsors like Clover, and all their dedicated hard work, Yvonne, Rocco and the team are confident that Roccy and Clova can be released into the Elandela reserve when they’re old enough. “The two little orphans, who were left to die by the rhino poachers, now have a chance to live normal lives.”

For more information and to pledge your support, visit