This is the story of a changing world and a living legend.
In remote places, in the impenetrable heart of Asian jungles and vast African plains, the last rhinoceroses hide. They gave rise to the myth of the unicorn. But, like the legendary beast, there would appear to be no place for them in our modern world, and all five existing species are now on the verge of extinction.
For the majority of people, some of these species of rhinoceros are stranger, more unfamiliar than the imaginary unicorn. They could disappear from the world entirely, and most of us would not know they had ever existed. Tales of a miraculous horn, ignorance and superstition have threatened the very existence of the rhinoceros. Historically, they have been hunted down in order to use their horns to neutralise the most powerful poisons or to cure sexual impotence, and for white men they became a coveted trophy. .
Today, the five species of rhinoceroses are under pressure from different sources. They continue to be hunted and persecuted, but a much greater threat now hangs over them. The habitat of the rhinoceroses is rapidly disappearing. Man is encroaching on the jungles in which the legends live, and killing off their inhabitants forever. But, paradoxically, man also brings new hopes.
Now, many people are prepared to pay in order to conserve and continue to enjoy such emblematic animals. The world’s parks and reserves are the last refuge of the rhinoceros. Conservation, the protection of their natural habitats, is also helping to protect other extraordinary species which, like them, are threatened with extinction. And in this way, man has become the last hope of the legendary unicorn.