Rhino

White Rhino Baby Named for Pioneering Conservationist

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The biggest addition at Florida’s Lion Country Safari is just a week old:  a 155-pound female Southern White Rhinoceros calf is now on display in the Rhino maternity area of the drive-through safari. 

Born on April 6, 2013 to mom Bloom after 16 months of gestation, the baby has been named Anna, after Rhino conservationist Anna Merz, who passed away on April 4. Merz was a founder of The Lewa Conservancy, which was established to conserve Rhinos in Kenya and has since grown to protect many species of African birds and mammals.

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Photo Credit:  Lion Country Safari

Lion Country Safari is home to 14 Rhinos and has produced 33 Rhino offspring since 1979 as a participant in the Association of Zoos & Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan. 

Of the five extant species of Rhinos (White, Black, Indian, Sumatran and Javan) the White Rhino is the most abundant, with approximately 20,150 alive today.  However, all five Rhino species are in peril.  The most significant threat to Rhinos is the trade in Rhino horn, which is used for traditional Asian medicine and as dagger handles in some Middle Eastern countries.  Despite international protections and treaties, demand for Rhino horn continues to escalate.

See more photos of Anna below the fold.

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Southern White Rhino Calf Charges Into San Diego Zoo Safari Park

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On the afternoon of February 25th, the San Diego Zoo Safari Park welcomed the newest member of their East African Plains exhibit with the birth of a healthy male Southern White Rhino calf. The young boy has since been named Kayode, which means "he brings joy" in the African language of Yoruba. He is sure to do just that for the visitors who come to see him as the youngster is already showing lots of quirks and personality. "Kayode is a little tank, a very cute little tank, and he is showing lots of personality. He loves running and interacting with his mom, sticking out his tongue, and showing the buffalo in his enclosure he’s a rhino and he’s in charge," said the lead keeper at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, Jane Kennedy.

While Kayode was just an estimated 150 pounds when he was first born, this small stature, for a rhino that is, won't last long. In the first year of his life, Kayode will grow around 100 pounds each and every month. By the time he is full grown, he will be a massive 4,000-5,000 pounds.

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Photo credits (above): Ken Bohn / San Diego Zoo Safari Park
Photo credits (below): Greg Pinter

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Although Kayode is his mother Kacy's first offspring, she has been a fantastic mom thus far. She has taken care to protect her son and make sure he never strays too far off in their expansive enclosure. In addition, where Kacy's experience lacks, the staff at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park more than makes up for it. Kayode is the 93rd Southern White Rhino calf born at the facility in its 41 years in existence, more than any other zoo in the world. In addition, Kayode is just the sixth 3rd-generation calf born at the zoo.

See and learn much more after the fold!

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It's a Girl! Second Southern White Rhino Baby for Australia Zoo

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Australia Zoo announced the birth of their second Southern White Rhinoceros calf, a baby girl. The calf, born February 7, is the first offspring for parents Inyeti and DJ. This is Inyeti’s first calf, and only the second rhino to be born at Australia Zoo and Queensland. According to keeper Renee Schier, the baby is making great progress. “We’re very excited to announce that the calf is healthy, strong and weighs between 45 – 50 kgs (99-110 pounds)."

Southern White Rhinoceros are listed as Near Threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), due to poaching threats and illegal use of Rhino horn. There are approximately 18 – 20,000 Rhino left in the wild and another 780 in captivity. Australia Zoo is part of a regional co-operative program working with other zoos in Australasia to maximize breeding potential and genetic diversity of the White Rhino.

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Photo Credit: Australia Zoo

Despite arriving a little earlier than anticipated the baby is showing all of the normal signs for a healthy calf. Renee added, “We’re really happy with her progress. She is feeding and is quite active – she was walking within hours of the birth.”

Here is a video of the baby that was made to announce a naming contest. The public was invited to submit names last week and now everyone is waiting for Terri Irwin, and her children Bindi and Robert to announce the name. 

 

More pictures of mom and baby after the fold:

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Rhino Calf Gets Bottle Feeding from Keepers at San Diego Zoo Safari Park

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Keepers at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park gave five-week-old Rhino calf Shomili, or Mili, as keepers call her, a bottle feeding as part of her daily nutritional routine this morning. Animal care has been giving the Greater One-horned Rhino calf bottle feedings since first time mother Sundari has not been able to give her calf all of the nutrition that she needs.

Sundari is a young mother and her milk is not coming in the way keepers expected. Animal care staff made the decision to give a supplemental bottle feeding twice a day to make sure Shomili gets the nutrition a young, growing Rhino requires.

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Safari Park keepers give a little TLC to a Greater One-horned Rhino calf, in the form of a soothing mud bath.

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Photo credits: Ken Bohn / San Diego Zoo Safari Park

 

Weighing 128 pounds when she was born December 13, Mili now weighs 245 pounds and is developing right on track, keepers report.


First Indian Rhino Baby Born in Poland at Warsaw Zoo

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On Christmas day, Warsaw Zoo welcomed this newborn Indian Rhinoceros with great excitement, because he is the first ever rhinoceros born in a Polish zoo. At birth he weighed in at 121.5 pounds (55 kilos) and was named Byś. His parents are Shikari (born in 2006 in Stuttgart) and Kuba (born in 2004 in Berlin).

In the wild, it's estimated that only about 3000 Indian Rhinoceros remain. They are among the rarest mammals in the world today. While loss of habitat is a factor, poachers are the largest threat to these animals, who, tragically, hunt and kill them mostly for their horns. Conservation efforts are essential to ensure this species survival.

Andrzej Zielinski, from the zoo's Culture Department, said, "The birth of this rhinoceros is one of the most important events in the history of Polish zoos."

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Photo Credit: Warsaw Zoo/Ewa Ziółkowska

Little Byś will not go into the outdoor habitat until the spring; until then, zoo guest can see him with his mother behind the scenes thanks to indoor cameras and exhibit screens.  Here he is at bathtime, which the little one enjoys every day.


Double the Fun: Two Rhinos Born at Knowsley Safari Park

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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.

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The calves were given African names to celebrate their wild heritage.  Njiri means “warthog” and Thabo means “joy.”

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!

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Two More Rhino Calves Bolster Conservation Efforts

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The Wilds conservation center welcomed two Rhinoceros calves this fall! Born within one month of one another, each young Rhino is actually a separate species. The Greater One-horned Rhinoceros (a.k.a. the Indian Rhino) was born Oct. 14, 2012 (pictured above and last), following shortly after the arrival of a Southern White Rhinoceros born Sept. 28, 2012 (pictured second).

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Photo credit: The Wilds

The fourth Greater One-horned Rhino born at the Wilds, marks the continuing success of this southeast Ohio conservation center's breeding program. This is the second calf for dam "Sanya" and the first for sire "Rustum". "Rustum" is part of a group brought from India by the San Diego Zoo in 2007 to bolster the genetics of the U.S. one-horned Rhino population.

“Rustum came to us as a young male and took some time to mature. It is exciting to see that his bloodline will now be represented in the North American Rhino population,” said Director of Animal Management Dan Beetem.

Nineteen-year-old “Julie,” the Wilds oldest female Southern White Rhino, gave birth to her fifth calf on Sept. 28, 2012. The sire, 9-year-old “Fireball,” came to the Wilds in 2008 as part of the Southern White Rhinoceros Species Survival Plan (SSP). The calf is the twelfth Southern White Rhino born at the Wilds.

Continue reading "Two More Rhino Calves Bolster Conservation Efforts" »


White Rhino calf travels cross-country to new home

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A male Southern White Rhinoceros calf born on an unusually cold night at Florida's White Oak Conservation Center is now being hand-reared by the staff at New Mexico's ABQ BioPark, thanks to a unique arrangement between the two facilities. 

After the baby was born in Florida on October 30, the White Oak staff observed that the 169-pound calf was slow to start nursing and did not establish a strong bond with his mother, so they decided to hand-rear the calf. 

Because the calf’s father is Bully, a male Rhino sent from the BioPark on a special loan to White Oak, the calf belongs to the BioPark.  White Oak Conservation Center partners with zoos to conserve threatened species through breeding and other programs.

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The calf is bottle-fed a mixture of skim and 1% cow's milk with extra dextrose and vitamins added. This formula mimics the very sweet, low-fat milk of Rhino mothers. The baby Rhino is hand-fed around the clock, every 3-4 hours, at the BioPark.

"We are pleased that Albuquerque can offer a good home to this Rhino calf," said Mayor Richard J. Berry, shown feeding the calf in the photo above. "We know that our Zoo will give him top-notch care, and what a great treat for families to watch this little guy grow up."

"The calf is very playful and rambunctious," said Zoo Manager Lynn Tupa, who traveled with the two-week-old calf from Florida. "He did great during the trip, and we enjoyed getting to know him. He loves his fuzzy blankets, which he rolls around on and drags with him."

The calf's first few months at the BioPark will be spent behind-the-scenes as he gets accustomed to staff and the three adult Rhinos Bertha, Lulu and Bernie.

The Southern White Rhinonoceros (Ceratotherium simum simum), native to southern Africa, is the world’s third largest land animal, but nearly became extinct in the early 1900s, when hunting reduced the White Rhino population to 100 animals. Today, there are more than 20,000 individuals. Conservation efforts such as captive breeding have been an integral part of this success story. Zoos and other facilities have been able to provide social, open spaces for Rhino groups to breed and thrive. Unfortunately, poaching for Rhino horns continues to threaten the future of the species.

Photo Credit:  ABQ BioPark


Indian Rhinoceros Born: It's A Girl!

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In the wee hours of November 3rd, a bouncing bundle of joy was delivered at Rotterdam Zoo in the Netherlands. Indian Rhino Mom "Namaste" gave birth to a happy, healthy female calf. The yet-to-be named baby Rhino was walking and drinking milk within 30 minutes of her birth. Namaste is an experienced mom and has given birth to 5 babies so far. Indian Rhinoceroses are threatened by illegal poaching. Today they can only be found in some nature reserves in Northern India and Nepal.

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Photo credit: Shirley Kroos (1-3) Rob Doorland (4)


Busch Gardens Welcomes Baby White Rhino

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On October 23, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay welcomed a baby White Rhinoceros. The female Rhino, who has yet to be named, was born at the 26-acre White Rhino habitat on Busch Gardens’ Serengeti Plain. This is the second calf born to mother Kisiri and the seventh for father Tambo. She weighed an estimated 140 pounds at the time of the birth, and will gain approximately four pounds each day until she reaches an adult weight of approximately 3,500 to 4,000 pounds.

Fewer than 15,000 white rhinos remain in the wild, and approximately 200 live in zoological facilities across North America. Busch Gardens participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP) to ensure genetic diversification among threatened and endangered animals in zoological facilities.  Busch Gardens has celebrated a total of seven White Rhino births since October 2004, and this birth brings the total white and black rhino population there to eight.

Kisiri, Tambo and another female white rhino were airlifted from Kruger National Park in South Africa in 2001 through the efforts of the International Rhino Foundation (IRF), a non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of rhinos. 

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Photo Credits: Busch Gardens Tampa Bay