25 Jun 2012:
Birth of Sumatran Rhino
Offers Hope for Endangered Species
Conservationists in Indonesia say a female Sumatran rhino gave birth to a healthy male calf at Way Kambas National Park
in Sumatra over the weekend, offering new hope for one of the world’s most
endangered mammal species. Following two miscarriages and a closely watched 15-month pregnancy, the rhino, named Ratu, delivered the calf at 12:45 a.m. Saturday, employees of the sanctuary said. According to conservationists, it is the first captive birth of a Sumatran rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis
) in Indonesia’s history and just the fourth captive birth of a rhino globally in the last century. The birth also marked the first time that a wild rhino (Ratu) was successfully bred with a captive rhino — in this case a male raised at the Cincinnati Zoo. The male rhino, Andalas, had been flown to Sumatra in 2007 in hopes that it would breed with one of the sanctuary’s three female rhinos. Scientists say that fewer than 275 Sumatran rhinos exist in the wild, and some experts place the species’ likelihood for survival at less than 50 percent
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