Rhinos Being Airlifted to Safety Will Make Your Day (VIDEO)

rhinos airlifted to safety

The breathtaking image to the right of the massive sleeping rhinoceros flying upside-down from a helicopter should be enough to make you pause with half-crazed wonder ... whee! But the story that goes along with it is just as amazing.

First, a little context: The population of black rhinos has been drastically declining over the years (their horns are very valuable), and now the species is endangered. Therefore, the World Wildlife Fund for Nature of South Africa launched a plan to protect the rhinos from poaching and increase their numbers by relocating several of them to a new, guarded conservation site. There's just one little problem. How do you move a 1.5-ton animal, let alone 19 of them?

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Answer: They're sedated with a tranquilizer gun from the air; then, once they've fallen asleep, they're blindfolded and hoisted by their ankles to a military helicopter, which transports them to their new location.

You may not believe this, but wildlife experts say it's actually the kindest way to move a rhinoceros: The more traditional way of moving them on the ground in trucks requires them to be asleep longer and travel uncomfortably over rough terrain. The upside-down chopper ride took only 10 minutes. The animal doctors said that the sleepy rhinos didn't feel a thing. I have no clue how they could know that, but it makes me feel good, so I'm just going to go with it. And who cares anyways? Now the rhinos are safe and sound!

After a week of awful stories about child rapes, missing babies, and other dreary news reports, this rhino rescue will have you believing in magic again. See for yourself:

Admit it, the video's pretty awesome, right?

 

Image via YouTube

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