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Czech zoo to remove rhino horns following French attack
In traditional Asian medicine, powdered rhino horn is used as a supposed cure for a range of illnesses.

Dvur Kralove Zoo is home to 21 black and southern white rhinos

A zoo in Czechia has said that it will remove the horns from its herd of rare rhinos following a brutal poaching attack in France.

Speaking to The Guardian, a spokeswoman for the Dvur Kralove Zoo said: “It’s for the sake of rhino safety. The attack (in France) put us on alert, the danger is really intense.”

On 7 March 2017, keepers found four-year-old Vince dead in his enclosure at Thoiry Zoo, Paris. The rhinoceros was shot three times in the head by poachers, who stole its horn using a chainsaw.

The Dvur Kralove Zoo is currently home to a herd of 21 black and southern white rhinos. It told the Guardian that vets will put the rhinos under anaesthesia before removing their horns with a chainsaw and filing the sharp edges.

“We have never done this because of poachers. We did it for other reasons like transport or health concerns,” she added.

According to the WWF, hundred of white rhino have been killed annually in recent years. The species is particularly vulnerable because it is relatively unaggressive.

Rhino horn can sell up to $60,000 per kilo - more than gold or cocaine - with most demand from China and Vietnam. In traditional Asian medicine, powdered horn is used as a supposed cure for a range of illnesses.

Dvur Kralove is the only zoo in the world to have succeeded in the captive breeding of this extremely rare species.

In 2009, it placed three northern white rhinos in the Ol Pejeta reserve in Kenya. 

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Sale of microbeads now banned

News Story 1
 The sale of products containing microbeads is now banned across England and Scotland, Defra has confirmed.

As part of government efforts to prevent these plastics ending up in the marine environment, retailers can no longer sell rinse-off cosmetics and personal care products containing microbeads. These tiny plastics were often added to products including face scrubs, soaps, toothpaste and shower gels.

Just a single shower is thought to send 100,000 of these beads down the drain and into the ocean, where it can cause serious harm to marine life. A ban on manufacturing products containing microbeads previously came into force in January this year. 

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George Eustice announces funding for Bovine Viral Diarrhoea

Farming minister George Eustice has announced a 5.7million funding package to help farmers tackle Bovine Viral Diarrhoea (BVD).

The funding will be available in England for three years through the Rural Development Programme and farmers will be able to apply for one-to-one farm advisory visits by a veterinary practitioner.

The project will recruit local vets who will then work with keepers of breeding cattle to tackle BVD on their farms.