Every other day Africa loses a rhino to poaching. Poaching has increased dramatically over the last year-and-a half, fueled by demand for rhino horn from the Asian market. The numbers being tallied in South Africa are grim—more than 600 rhinos were poached across the African continent in the last five years and South Africa alone has seen the loss of over 212 rhinos since 2009. There used to be hundreds of thousands of rhinos throughout Africa. South Africa, proud stronghold of the African black and white rhino with more than 80 percent of Africa’s total rhino population, has been losing at least 20 rhinos per month. Approximately 4,000 black rhinos and 17,500 white rhinos are all that prevent Africa’s rhinos from extinction. “This poaching epidemic is extremely worrying,” says Matthew Lewis, WWF African species expert. “If it is not stopped, the rhino conservation progress of the last decade will be in jeopardy, greatly affecting biodiversity as well as the tourism industry and the communities that benefit from it.” The increase of rhino poaching is strongly linked to growing demand from Asia. Highly organized international poaching criminal syndicates deploy advanced technologies ranging from night vision scopes, silenced weapons, darting equipment and helicopters to carry out their mission. Make some noise This September, the spotlight is on stepping up security efforts in dangerous areas with high rates of poaching, highlighting the poaching crisis among South Africans and raising funds to support the rangers who put their lives on the line to protect Africa’s rhinos. “We’re asking people to take action during this month to help us protect our remaining rhino populations and support our rhino warriors – the men and women at the front line who risk their lives every day against sophisticated, ruthless and heavily-armed international criminals that run the illegal rhino horn trade,” says Dr. Joseph Okori, head of WWF's African Rhino Program. The month will culminate with a "Make Noise for Rhinos Day" on Wednesday, September 22, 2010. At 1pm local Johannesburg time (6am EST) everyone is everyone is invited to dust off their World Cup vuvuzelas and let out a mighty sound as a symbolic call for immediate action to stop rhino poaching through strengthened law enforcement and strict legal penalties. At this rate soon rhino hunting will be :banned: in Africa.