Three Reasons to Buy the ZooBorns Books
Milking a Killer Whale

Whipsnade Zoo Rescues Baby Rhino after Breech Birth

ZSL Whipsnade Zoo staff are celebrating after a challenging Asian Rhino calf birth. Baby Karamat, which means miracle in Nepalese, was born breeched (back feet first) to mom Beluki and as a result was traumatized and unable to suckle properly. Despite attempts by keepers and vets to entice the calf to latch on, things were looking bleak when after 24 hours she still had not taken any of her mother’s milk.

Baby rhino and mom after a bath

Staff, who were camped out in sleeping bags in the next door hay barn, took the rare step of intervening. Their job was complicated by the fact that not just any milk would do. As a newborn, the calf needed colostrum, which is the special milk high in antibodies produced by mammals in late stage pregnancy. Lucky for Karamat, there were local farmers and local pregnant dairy cows willing to share! After sourcing special colostrum milk, high in antibodies, from local dairy farmers, they fed the youngster by bottle.

Baby rhino and mom after a bath

Baby rhino calf ZSL Whipsnade Zoo

Over the next few days and nights keepers and vets worked relentlessly to keep the youngster alive. Finally, after three long days and two overnight vigils the calf responded to their efforts and started feeding by herself from Beluki

Baby Karamut on her own

Baby rhino calf and mom side by side