HESC-Press-Releases

Press releases

HESC RELEASES TWO ORPHANED RHINOS BACK INTO THE WILD AFTER  FIVE-YEARS OF REHABILITATION –  by INVESTEC RHINOLIFELINE

July 2019

Two rhinos that were orphaned five years ago as a result of poaching have been released after being rescued and rehabilitated by the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC). Gertjie and Matimba were hand-reared and cared for by a group of dedicated individuals who have made it their life’s mission to save the rhino species. On the 25th of June, the gates were opened and for the first time in HESC’s history, the orphaned rhinos walked out into the wild.

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HESC RELEASES FEMALE CHEETAH IN PIDWA WILDERNESS RESERVE 

January 2019

The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) released a captive-bred female cheetah in the Pidwa Wilderness Reserve yesterday, Tuesday 29 January 2019.

The release forms part of the Southern African cheetah meta-population programme facilitated by the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) and entails selectively releasing captive-bred cheetahs to enhance the genetic diversity of the limited number of free-ranging members of the species in southern Africa. HESC has been breeding cheetahs since 1990 and was accredited by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) as a breeding centre for cheetahs in October 2003.

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VICTIMS OF RHINO POACHING RETURNED TO THE WILD AS SURVIVORS AND FULLY REHABILITATED BY HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE 

December 2018

The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) has released two white
rhinos back into the wild that were brought to the Centre in September 2013 after a brutal poaching attack on a neighbouring reserve left them severely maimed and barely alive.

The two beauties that ran off into an undisclosed location yesterday, 3 December, were a far cry from the pitiful animals that came to HESC five years ago. Their horns had been cut off with a chain saw while they were grazing in the reserve on 30 August 2013. The bull died on the scene and the two cows were left with gaping holes and their sinus cavities exposed where their horns had previously defined their iconic appearance.

(Special thank you to Dr. Johan Marais from Saving the Survivors and Dr. Peter Rogers for their veterinary experience and commitment to the treatment of these two rhino cows.)

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BLACK MAMBA ANTI-POACHING UNIT PARTNERS WITH HESC

September 2018

The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) is delighted to announce a new partnership with the Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Unit, the first majority female anti-poaching unit in South Africa. Founded in 2013 by Transfrontier Africa NPC, the Black Mamba Ani-Poaching unit was formed to protect the Olifants West Region of Balule Nature Reserve.

Within the first year of operation the Black Mambas were invited to expand into other regions, and now protect all boundaries of the 52,000ha Balule Nature Reserve, which forms part of the Greater Kruger National Park.

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ORPHANED ELEPHANT CALF SUCCESSFULLY INTRODUCED TO THE JABULANI HERD

May 2018

An elephant calf that has been in the care of the Hoedspruit Endangered Species
Centre (HESC) for the past 16 months, was successfully introduced to the resident Jabulani herd early April 2018 and will remain with the herd going forward.

In November 2016, the elephant calf, whom we have named Shawu, was found wandering
along the R40 between Klaserie and Hoedspruit. He was brought to HESC, where we have the facilities and expertise of the highest standard, to care for and accommodate orphaned and injured elephants.

Shawu arrived at HESC extremely distressed, hungry and thirsty, without anyone’s knowledge of the amount of time he had survived on his own. Our dedicated HESC team of curators and experienced elephant carers worked around the clock to ensure his survival. This entailed being bottle-fed every two hours and 24hour care, and his state of health improved rapidly.

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HESC RELEASES TWO CAPTIVE-BRED CHEETAHS TO THE WILD

December 2015
The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) released two male cheetahs, Wim and Tobie, at the Air Force Base Makhado (formerly known as Air Force Base Louis Trichardt) on 2 December 2015.

Captive born Wim, six years old, and Tobie, seven years old, were donated to the Air Force Base to keep the runways clear of small game to ensure a safe landing environment for the 2 Squadron Gripen fighter planes based there. The Air Force Base is situated in a remote wilderness area of close on 3 000 ha where animals roam free, resulting in small game such as warthogs, impala, duiker and steenbuck on the runways jeopardising the safety of aircraft landing.

 


 

ANOTHER ORPHANED RHINO BULL ARRIVES AT HESC AFTER HIS MOTHER IS POACHED

18 November 2015
A young male rhino, estimated to be about 7 months old, arrived via helicopter from an un-named reserve in Hoedspruit on Tuesday 10th November. His mother had died as a result of injuries inflicted by poachers. The young bull was in a critical condition and had sustained severe injuries to his hindquarters in what we believe was a hyena attack. The new baby was affectionately named “Stompie” by Christo (HESC’s curator) and his team.

 


 

JUMP FOR THE RESCUED RHINOS @ HESC

14 October 2015
Why not take on the challenge of a lifetime? Experience the thrill of skydiving from over 10,000 feet by taking part in the Jump for Rhinos campaign. In an effort to raise awareness and funds for the Rescued Rhinos @ HESC, Adventure Skydives has partnered with the Wildlife Conservation Trust by offering you the opportunity to experience this thrilling, high-energy experience of a lifetime, while raising awareness and funds for the orphaned and rehabilitated rhinos being cared for at The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre.

 


 

THE REBRANDING OF HESC’S STUDENT PROGRAMME TO THE WILDLIFE CONSERVATION EXPERIENCE

29 June 2015
Greetings to HESC Students (past, present and future). We wanted to update you on a couple of important pieces of information.

1. We have changed the name of The Student Programme to The Wildlife Conservation Experience. The decision to rebrand was based on the new name being a more accurate reflection of the experience, appealing to a broader segment of people. Spread the word!

 


 

HESC LAUNCHES RESCUED RHINOS @ HESC AND ANNOUNCES THE EYES ON RHINOS CAMPAIGN

9 April 2015
We have partnered with Africam, a long-standing supporter and friend, to launch a new initiative called ‘Eyes on Rhinos’. After the arrival of two poached and now-rehabilitated rhinos (Lion’s Den and Dingle Dell), and more recently the arrival of our two orphaned baby rhinos (Gertjie and Matimba), we have found ourselves facing the immediate need to establish a rhino sanctuary at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre. It gives us pleasure to announce the launch of the Rescued Rhinos @ HESC.

 


 

KHULA’S COTTAGE – LUXURY ACCOMMODATION

December 2014
For clients planning their early 2015 getaways, Khula’s Cottage at The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre offers a unique and distinctive self-catering experience, ideal for self-drive clients who do not wish to compromise on comfort, but are looking for an authentic bush experience with great value for money.

 


 

THE HESC WELCOMES FOUR NEW CHEETAH CUBS

1 August 2014
The evening of the 26th July saw the arrival of four tiny cheetah cubs at Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre’s (HESC) maternity ward.

Born to mother Meg, what makes this particular litter so special is that the father of the cubs, Tristan, is a king cheetah. As Meg does not carry the king cheetah gene, none of the cubs will be a king cheetah. They will, however, all carry the gene. If they are paired with another gene-carrying partner in the future, they may well give rise to another generation of kings. King cheetahs have been reported in the wild, including a sighting in the Kruger National Park in 1974, but are incredibly rare, which emphasises the importance of an occasion such as this.

 


 

BABY RHINO ARRIVES AT HESC AFTER MOTHER POACHED

8 May 2014
We took custody of a very special animal last night. A 3 month old baby rhino, anticipated to have been born on around the 19th February, was brought to the HESC after being found next to his dead mother who had been tragically and brutally poached for her horn. It was a devastating sight, as the tiny animal would not leave her side, and was crying inconsolably for her. Dr. Peter Rogers from Provet assisted in darting him, and he was transported the short distance to The Centre with great care.

 


 

HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE GETS INVOLVED IN POACHED RHINO REHABILITATION

23 November 2013
Rhino poaching has reached unprecedented levels in South Africa. Sadly, many of the rhinos massacred could have been saved had they been reached in time, and had veterinary specialists administered appropriate treatment. The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) has launched a pilot initiative following the arrival of two rhino calves at the facility on Friday 30th August 2013. Both had been attacked by poachers in a reserve in the area. Their horns had been neatly sawed off, leaving open and exposed sinus cavities. The risk of infection in cases such as these is the over-riding cause of death.

 


 

TWO KING CHEETAH CUBS BORN TO THE HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE

August 2013
We are very proud to be able to introduce two new baby King cheetahs to the world!
The magnificent and rare King Cheetah was first discovered in 1926, where it was thought to be a completely new and exciting species – a strange hybrid between a cheetah and a leopard. Although we now know that it is not a new species, but in fact just a pattern variation of a normal spotted cheetah, no one can dispute the fact that the King cheetah is possibly the most beautiful of Africa’s wild cats.

 


 

KHULA’S COTTAGE IS LAUNCHED AT THE HESC

8 March 2013
To our partners in travel,
Khula’s Cottage is the recently unveiled eco-friendly self-catering cottage, built in a truly unique and extraordinary location within the perimeter of The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre. This private retreat facilitates a true African getaway from the hustle and bustle of city living.

 


 

HELPING AFRICA’S BIG CATS COME ROARING BACK

Cheetahs reign at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre. One of the core activities is cheetah conservation including the release and establishment of captive-bred cheetahs back into the wild. The center, a 4 1/2 -hour drive from Johannesburg, South Africa, is one of several research, conservation and rehab facilities in southern Africa working to preserve the dwindling number of big cats.

 


 

THE HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE SUPPORTS LOCAL SCHOOL

25 August 2011
The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre has once again furthered its community development initiatives by supporting the Paulos Ngobeni School, its charity of choice, in collaboration with G&H Transport who has sponsored the school with a new minibus, aiding regular, complimentary visits to the Centre, which will form part of the school’s annual educational curriculum.

G&H Transport visited the Centre earlier this year hoping to support the same with its regular involvement with Paulos Ngobeni School. Through their own foundation, G&H Transport bought a mini-bus for the school which will be used for the upliftment and education of the learners and utilised to make regular visits to the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre, forming part of the students curriculum and educating them about social responsibility as well as conservation and wildlife.

Together with the international students who visit the Centre on a monthly basis, the Centre will also arm the students of Paulos Ngobeni School with computer skills and offer art classes in conjunction with the recently launched Community Art Gallery.

 


 

5 CHEETAHS SUCCESSFULLY RELOCATED TO THE HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE

20 April 2011
On Sunday, 17 April 2011 and after many months of preparation and much anticipation, five cheetahs, an adult female with three sub-adults and an adult male, were successfully relocated to their new home at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) as part of the Centre’s ongoing breeding programme.

 


 

THE HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE LAUNCHES IT’S FIRST CHEETAH CONSERVATION TRAINING PROGRAMME IN 2011

25 February 2011
The Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC), one of the leading private research and breeding facilities for endangered species in South Africa, is proud to launch the first in its series of conservation and wildlife educational programmes during 2011 aptly called ‘Cheetah Conservation Training Programme’.

 


NEW GENERAL MANAGER AT THE HOEDSPRUIT ENDANGERED SPECIES CENTRE

17 December 2010
Gretha Scheepers has been appointed as the new General Manager at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC), part of the award-winning Camp Jabulani, situated in the heart of the Limpopo Province, which is a proud member of the Relais & Châteaux Association.

Scheepers’ duties will include continuing the Centre’s work of sustainable energy and recycling policies, extensive educational programmes for staff as well as local communities and the implementation of its multiple pioneering conservation programmes, which has resulted in the recent achievement of the highly coveted ‘Conde Nast Traveler World Savers Award’.

 


 

THE CAMP JABULANI PIONEER FOR CHANGE PROGRAMME
Combining the Luxurious Elephant Experience with ‘Volun’tourism’ at the HESC in an exclusive 4-for-3 package.

11 November 2010
A strong interest by Camp Jabulani’s clientele into the practices conducted at the Hoedspruit Endangered Species Centre (HESC) has lead to the conceptualisation of a more intensive “hands-on” ‘volun’tourism’ itinerary. This will enable visitors to become actively involved in a working day at the progressive wildlife conservation facility which is custodian to a number of orphaned, injured and vulnerable animal species. A visit to the HESC is always offered to Camp Jabulani’s guests, but many have expressed the desire for a more interactive and participative experience as opposed to the guided tour where animals are simply observed.