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By: Anna Merz
233 pages, 4 col plates, 7 col photos, 28 b/w photos
ANNA MERZ was born in England in 1931. She studied politics and economics at Nottingham University, then read for the Bar at Lincoln's Inn. On marrying she went to live in Ghana where she ran a light engineering workshop and trained and rode racing ponies. She also worked as an honorary warden for the Ghanaian Game Department and National Park and took five lorry trips into the Sahara to reconnoiter sites for wildlife reserves.
In 1976 she and her second husband Karl retired to Kenya where she set up the Ngare Sergoi Rhino Sanctuary, in 1992 extended to incorporate the entire Lewa Downs ranch. Anna Merz lived on the sanctuary from 1981 to 1996, sharing with it a number of wild animals - including cheetah, leopard, buffalo and zebra. She now lives in South Africa, and remains active on the board of Lewa Downs. She is a member of the IUCN Asian Rhino Specialist Group and has dedicated her life to the raising of funds for rhinosceros conservation and security.
Rhino: At the Brink of Extinction is the story of her attempt to save Kenya's black rhino from the poachers who threaten the species with extinction. Whole herds have been massacred in a single night and individual rhinos hijacked and murdered on their way to reserves. But since Anna Merz founded her high-security sanctuary, one group of rhinos has been given the chance to survive - and this group is breeding and increasing every year.
Here she tells of how, in the face of ridicule and disbelief, she first coaxed 10,000 acres of Africa from a farming family and then permission from the Kenyan government to hunt and capture rhinos in the wild. She describes her unusual life within the sanctuary at the foot of Mt. Kenya, and all she has learnt about rhinos through her daily observations - revealing them to be unexpectedly intelligent and gentle animals, with distinctly individual personalities. And she tells how she acted as substitute mother to Samia, the orphaned baby rhino which she hand-raised for three years, before successfully reintroducing her to the wild.
In this third edition, Anna Merz continues the story of the rhinos at Lewa Downs since 1991 in an additional chapter, and she describes the tragic death of Samia and her calf Samuel.
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