Two White Rhinoceros calves – one male and one female – were born just two days apart at the Knowsley Safari Park.
On November 7, female Piglet delivered baby Njiri and on November 9, baby Thabo was born to 18-year-old Winnie. Both calves were sired by 18-year-old bull Shako. Piglet and Winnie were pregnant for 16 months.
These calves are the 12th and 13th Rhinos to be born at Knowlsey Safari Park in the last ten years. The park’s breeding program is managed by the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria’s (EAZA) European Endangered Species Programme (EEP).
White Rhinos are hunted extensively in their native African home and are perilously close to extinction with only about 20,000 remaining in the wild. Rhinos are often killed solely for their horns, which are sought on the black market. The birth of these two calves is important to maintaining a healthy and genetically diverse population in zoos – which may one day be needed to augment the dwindling wild population.
Photo Credits: Knowsley Safari Park
More photos below the fold!