Prince Harry's devastating photos from South Africa are why poaching needs to go.

Prince Harry's tour of Kruger National Park in South Africa quickly become emotional for the 31-year-old royal.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images.


(Warning: Potentially upsetting image below).

The prince was heartbroken to see the carcasses of endangered animals left behind by poachers.

Photo by Paul Edwards/Getty Images.

"This belongs to South Africa and it's been stolen by other people. And the body's left here, wasted," the prince said upon viewing the body of a rhinoceros with just its horn cut away, according to a report in The Guardian.

Harry has been documenting the trip on Instagram and appealing to his followers to help stop poaching.

Among the heartrending photos: this one of the prince hugging an elephant that had been sedated for examination.

A photo posted by Kensington Palace (@kensingtonroyal) on

"After a very long day in Kruger National Park, with five rhinos sent to new homes and three elephants freed from their collars - like this sedated female - I decided to take a moment.

I know how lucky I am to have these experiences, but hearing stories from people on the ground about how bad the situation really is, upset and frustrated me. How can it be that 30,000 elephants were slaughtered last year alone? None of them had names, so do we not care? And for what? Their tusks? Seeing huge carcasses of rhinos and elephants scattered across Africa, with their horns and tusks missing is a pointless waste of beauty."

And this one, in which Harry, sadly, works to dehorn a rhino — one of the only short-term methods of deterring potential poachers.

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"I was working with Dr. Mark Jago and Dr. Pete Morkel in Namibia. Some countries are de-horning small populations of rhino to deter poachers from shooting them. It is a short-term solution and surely no substitute for professional and well-trained rangers protecting these highly sought-after animals. De-horning has to be done every two years for it to be effective and can only realistically be done with small populations in open bush."

There are many more here. Warning: Several of them are extremely graphic and upsetting.

Poaching is no joke, and it's a growing problem.

The ivory trade has already devastated the rhinoceros population, which currently sits at around 29,000 (down from about 500,000 in the early 1900s). The death of a white rhino at the San Diego Zoo last month left the total number of that rhino species remaining on Earth at just three.

It's not just the animals that are at risk.

Big-game poaching often disrupts tourism for countries that depend on it, as the growing scarcity of wildlife to view and the possibility of violence dissuades potential visitors. Fewer visitors means increased local poverty and staff cutbacks at national parks, which can lead to even more poaching.

There are some signs of hope, however, that the tide might be slowly turning.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images.

Back in September, the U.S. and China signed an agreement to take steps to stem the ivory trade — a very big deal, as both countries are among the world's largest markets for the illicit substance. And this New York Times report found increasing levels of local support for anti-poaching efforts. It also found that even some former poachers are turning against the trade, which they see as contributing to the destruction of their own communities.

Ultimately, Prince Harry is right. It's critical that we save these majestic animals and — just as importantly — the people whose livelihoods depend on their survival before it's too late.

Here are some good folks — including Save the Rhino, the Black Mambas (a predominantly female anti-poaching brigade in South Africa), and the International Anti-Poaching Foundation — who are on that. Do check them out.

We can't allow moments like this to become a thing of the past.

Prince Harry has released this personal photo taken during his summer visit to southern Africa. Here Prince Harry shares his story behind the photograph... "This was the second time Zawadi, a female black rhino, met someone from my family. My brother William fed her three years ago in Kent just before she left under a translocation project to Tanzania where she now lives in a sanctuary. Thanks to the passion and stubbornness of Tony Fitzjohn OBE and his amazing rangers, she and many others are living it up in the bush and their numbers are growing. She goes nuts for carrots and I loved being able to send William this photo. Hats off to Tusk Trust." http://www.tusk.org/mkomazi-national-park Photograph ©Prince Harry
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Simon & Garfunkel's song "Bridge Over Troubled Water" has been covered by more than 50 different musical artists, from Aretha Franklin to Elvis Presley to Willie Nelson. It's a timeless classic that taps into the universal struggle of feeling down and the comfort of having someone to lift us up. It's beloved for its soothing melody and cathartic lyrics, and after a year of pandemic challenges, it's perhaps more poignant now than ever.

A few years a go, American singer-songwriter Yebba Smith shared a solo a capella version of a part of "Bridge Over Troubled Water," in which she just casually sits and sings it on a bed. It's an impressive rendition on its own, highlighting Yebba's soulful, effortless voice.

But British singer Jacob Collier recently added his own layered harmony tracks to it, taking the performance to a whole other level.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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