Lately it seems we wait until it’s almost too late to save a species. This is the case for the Northern White Rhinoceros species.
By now, we all may have watched or read a news story about 42 year old Sudan, the last male White Rhino on earth who must be guarded 24 hours a day by a team of armed rangers at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in central Kenya. This conservancy houses three of the five northern white rhinos left on earth. The kicker is Sudan must mate with one of remaining females if their species is to survive as reported by Quartz online . It is a well known fact rhinos have a hard time reproducing so we will be watching this closely and hope Sudan will bring life back to his species. Can you believe there were over 2,000 northern white rhinos roaming our planet in 1960? Humans have decimated this noble species.
BBC News listed the remaining last northern White Rhinos left on earth:
- Nola – Female, approx. 40 years old. Lives at the San Diego Zoo. Attempts to mate her with Angalifu failed
- Nabire – Female, 31 years old. Born in captivity. Housed at Dvur Kralove Zoo, Czech Republic
- Sudan – Male, 43 years old. Lives in semi-wild state at Ol Pejeta Conservancy, Kenya. Captured from the wild at age three. Probably too elderly to mate naturally
- Najin – Female, 25 years old. Lives at Ol Pejeta Conservancy. May still be a candidate for artificial insemination, but previous attempts in Czech Republic failed
- Fatu – Female, 14 years old. Najin’s daughter. Absence of pregnancies has probably rendered her infertile
- Angalifu (DECEASED) – Male, 44 years old. Died at San Diego Zoo on 14 December
So, as you can see, the only other male, Fatu, passed on. Jan Stejska of Dvur Kralove Zoo in the Czech Republic told BBC News, “We can go for artificial techniques of reproduction, but they can really pose a risk to the animals… You have to sedate them and you have to work inside them, so you have to be very careful.” BBC has also done a great job describing the plight of the northern white rhinos in this short documentary:
Want to know how you can learn more and help us save the Northern White Rhino? Here are 4 great ways!
- Check out Big Life Foundation’s Rhino Project
- Check out David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust’s Rhino Conservation page
- Check out Save the Rhino‘s page
- Consider signing petitions like this to make a difference. You would be surprised how much of an impact they really have!
All four are great ways of getting involved and helping save the white rhino. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Without action, you aren’t going anywhere.” An important message, indeed.