Get to know the black rhino
[Extract from Save the Rhino International fact file article]
Diceros bicornis: “Di” meaning “two”, “cerato” meaning “horn” in Greek and “bi” meaning “two”, and “cornis” meaning “horn” in Latin
- Synonym: Hook-lipped rhino
- Subspecies: There are four subspecies of the black rhino
- Colour Both the black and white rhino are actually the same colour
- Hair Black rhinos only have hair on their ears, tail tips and eyelashes
- Solitary Despite popular beliefs that the black rhino is a solitary species, the BBC Africa series recorded a group of black rhinos socially congregating at a waterhole
- Activity They are most active at night
- Appetite black rhino are browsers and they use their hooked lip to eat trees, bushes and shrubs
- Life Expectancy black rhinos live up to 30-35 years in the wild and 35-45+ years in captivity
- Size: the black rhino is the smaller of the two African species
- Weight: adult males weigh up to 1,350 kg and females up to 900 kg. Weight at birth: 35-45 kg
- Shoulder height: black rhinos stand at approximately 1.6 metres tall at the shoulder
- The horn: black rhinos have two horns, which grow continually from the skin at their base throughout their life (like human fingernails).
- Current threat: poachers remain the biggest threat to the black rhino. However, with strict protection and effective biological management, black rhino numbers are slowly recovering and currently, there are approximately between 5,040 and 5,458 animals (according to figures published by IUCN in 2016)
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