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The mission of the International Rhino Foundation is to support and operate rhino
conservation and research programs both in nature and in captivity with particular
emphasis on intensive management and protection.


During the late 1980's, Black Rhino populations in Zimbabwe were declining at an alarming rate due to intense poaching. In 1989, a group of concerned individuals and institutions founded the International Black Rhino Foundation (IBRF) to assist in the conservation of Black Rhinos in Zimbabwe through both in situ and ex situ efforts. In part due to the support of IBRF, poaching has been virtually eliminated and Black Rhino populations have stabilized and are now increasing.

In 1993, in response to the global crisis in rhino conservation, the IBRF evolved into the International Rhino Foundation (IRF) and expanded its mission to encompass all 5 species of rhino. The IRF is involved in both in situ (in nature) and ex situ (in captivity) programs, which IRF believes are both critical for the survival of the rhino. For its programs in nature, IRF concentrates on the species and subspecies most in need of, and most appropriate for, intensive protection and management. For its programs in captivity, IRF facilitates management and sponsors research with the ultimate objective of helping captive populations become truly viable and hence an integral part of conservation strategies for rhinos.

The International Rhino Foundation is governed by a Board of Directors who have generously contributed to the Foundation's efforts to support both in situ and ex situ programs for all rhino species. The IRF has field staff in Africa and Asia. The IRF also operates a full time Program Office at the White Oak Conservation Center, a research and conservation center for endangered wildlife.

IRF Board Members



IRF Staff & Special Advicors

The IRF collaborates and coordinated with many organizations worldwide, towards the common good of rhino conservation.


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