The Eastern Cape DEDEAT Green Scorpions have been shortlisted for a national Rhino Conservation Award.
They were nominated in the Conservation Practitioner category, and have been shortlisted alongside the Marula South Rangers and SANParks's Kruger National Park Airwing.
The annual Rhino Conservation Awards seek to recognise those working to combat the threat of poaching and to conserve and protect Africa’s wildlife.
The winners will be announced on World Ranger Day, on 31 July.
Each organisation and individual that has been shortlisted has contributed in some way to a conservation success story. Such stories, which allow species to flourish in their natural environments, would not be possible without the efforts undertaken by various organisations and individuals, the organisers said.
"The media tends to focus on the number of carcasses poached, but everyday many species are protected thanks to the blood, sweat and tears of dedicated conservationists and rangers who deserve recognition," said Andrew Campbell, CEO of the Game Rangers’ Association of Africa.
Eric Madamalala, Deputy Chairman of the Game Rangers’ Association of Africa., said it was good to see a variety of entrants for skills, community initiatives and hardcore conservation and wildlife management committed from across Africa.
"This shows a community of people joining hands together for the better tomorrow for all," he said.
This year, the Rhino Conservation Awards will be sponsoring over 250 rangers with Ranger Protect insurance cover.
This policy provides rangers with the necessary protection they need to comfortably and confidently perform their duties in the field and ensures the well-being of Africa’s rangers and their families are improved through the provision of adequate insurance cover in the event of injury or death.
These awards are hosted annually in collaboration with the Game Rangers’ Association of Africa (GRAA) and are made possible with the generous support of sponsors ZEISS and Chinese New Enterprise Investment (CNEI) and are endorsed by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).
His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco, who is committed to the protection of endangered species through the support of his Foundation, is the Patron of the Rhino Conservation Awards.
These awards ‘pay tribute to the determination and the exceptional courage of those who are fighting, often putting their own lives at risk, to save, to give hope to our children and to enable the species under threat today to continue to contribute to the necessary diversity of nature,’ Prince Albert II of Monaco said.