Rhinos of the World:
There are five species of rhinoceros, all of which are found in either Africa or Asia.
A summary of types and populations
Indian or Greater One-horned Rhinoceros
Found in India and Nepal. Conservation efforts have raised the wild population from as few as 200 to about 3,000, but now under increasing threat from poachers.
Dicerorhinus sumatrensis harrisoni
— Bornean Rhino. Only about 50 animals thought to survive on the island of Borneo.
Dicerorhinus sumatrensis sumatrensis
— Western Sumatran Rhino. About 200 animals are thought to survive on the island of Sumatra, with perhaps another 75 in peninsular Malaysia.
Dicerorhinus sumatrensis lasiotis
— Northern Sumatran Rhino. Probably EXTINCT. Historically occurred in India and Bangladesh, where the last reliable sightings were in the 1960s. There is an extremely small chance that a tiny population survives in northern Burma, but conflict and political difficulties have prevented a thorough survey.
Javan or Lesser One-horned Rhinoceros
Rhinoceros sondaicus annamiticus
— Vietnamese Rhinoceros. EXTINCT. Once widespread across southeast Asia, this type was considered extinct until a tiny population was found in the late 1980s in a forest in Vietnam that had been heavily bombed in the Vietnam War. Despite the area being declared a national park, the last known individual was shot by a poacher in 2010.
Rhinoceros sondaicus sondaicus
— Javan Rhinoceros. Once found on Sumatra and Java, now only about 40 animals remain in Ujung Kulon National Park in western Java.
Rhinoceros sondaicus inermis
— Indian Javan Rhinoceros. EXTINCT. Once found from eastern India to Burma, this type is thought to have gone extinct before 1925.
Diceros bicornis bicornis
— South-western Black Rhino. Found in more arid areas of southern Africa.
Diceros bicornis longipes
— Western Black Rhino. EXTINCT. Last-known population, in northern Cameroon, was wiped out by poachers between 2003 and 2006.
Diceros bicornis michaeli
— Eastern Black Rhino. Occurs in east Africa, with a small, artificially-established 'insurance' population in South Africa.
Diceros bicornis minor
— South-central Black Rhino. Most numerous of the Black Rhino subspecies. Occurs in southern Africa.
Some authorities consider Southern White and Northern White Rhino to be subspecies of the same species, Ceratotherium simum
. Others, citing a recent genetic study and morphological differences which indicate that the two forms have been separated for about a million years, treat Northern White Rhino as a separate species, Ceratotherium cottoni
Southern White or White Rhinoceros
By far the most numerous rhino type in the world, with a population of over 18,000. It was thought to be extinct in the late 1800s, but a tiny population of under 100 animals was rediscovered in the Zululand region of South Africa. After decades of intensive conservation work, it has now been reintroduced to parks and reserves in South Africa and neighboring countries.
Northern White or Nile Rhinoceros
Once thought to have a population of over 2,000 animals centered on wet, low-lying regions of South Sudan, northern Uganda and northeastern Congo, this type is on the brink of extinction. The last known wild population, in Garamba National Park in the Congo, was poached out of existence in about 2007, and only seven individuals remain in captivity: One in the Czech Republic, two in the USA and four in Kenya.
— Adam Welz
Go back to the article, “The Dirty War Against Africa’s Remaining Rhinos”
Yale Environment 360 is
a publication of the
Yale School of Forestry
& Environmental Studies
e360 on Facebook
Donate to e360
View mobile site
Subscribe to our newsletter
Subscribe to our feed:
Yale Environment 360
is sponsoring a contest to honor the best environmental videos. Find more contest information.
Business & Innovation
Policy & Politics
Pollution & Health
Science & Technology
Antarctica and the Arctic
Central & South America
Yale Environment 360
articles are now available in Spanish and Portuguese on Universia
, the online educational network. Visit the site.
is now available for mobile devices at e360.yale.edu/mobile
The Warriors of Qiugang
, a Yale Environment 360
video that chronicles the story of a Chinese village’s fight against a polluting chemical plant, was nominated for a 2011 Academy Award for Best Documentary (Short Subject).
Watch the video.
Top Image: aerial view of Russia
. © Google & TerraMetrics.
In a Yale Environment 360
video, photographer Pete McBride documents how increasing water demands have transformed the Colorado River, the lifeblood of the arid Southwest. Watch the video.