Nepal sees significant rise in rhino population as poaching decreases, births increase
"Working closely with the community to set up buffer zones has helped in our conservation,"
- Maheswor Dhakal, an ecologist with Nepal's Department of National Parks and Wildlife Conservation
Nepal's rhinoceros population has risen significantly over the past three years owing to better security against poachers and community conservation programs, an official said Tuesday.
Dhakal said the number of rhinos had decreased during the decade of fighting between government troops and Maoists rebels that ended in 2006 with a peace agreement.
During the conflict, soldiers were pulled out of conservation duty to fight the insurgents, leaving the forests unguarded and allowing poachers to hunt the animals with little resistance.