US Sending Last Male Rhino To Indonesia To Mate

Posted: Aug 26 2015, 7:15am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 
US Sending Last Male Rhino to Indonesia to Mate
Sumatran Rhino / CREDIT: Rasmus Gren Havmøller
  • U.S. and Indonesian authorities make last ditch effort to save the rhino species extinction

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U.S. sends its last male rhino to Indonesia to try and save the species of rhinos nearing extinction in the world

A couple of year ago the Cincinnati zoo made an effort to breed two Sumatran rhinos. They tried to breed the brother and sister duo named Harapan and Suci.

Unfortunately, the female rhino named Suci was diagnosed with a disease. Her iron level rose in her internal organs. It not only rendered her infertile but also claimed her life. She failed to produce a calf.

Now her brother remains among the only 100 rhinos around the world. The Indonesian government tried to herd all the rhinos in Brunei. They were disappointed to find out that there are not many left.

The rhinos specie Dicerorhinus sumatrensis is famous for its double horns. It is nearly extinct around the world. They started from southeastern Asia, from the foothills of the Himalayas in India and Bhutan to Borneo and Sumatra.

By the early 1980s, its range had contracted to a patch of peninsular Malaysia. And a few scattered parks on the islands, and its number had been reduced to a few hundred.

The reduction was a result of disease outbreaks, long distances and poachers. The poachers raving efforts to own the heads on their walls proved expensive to the species.

In 1984, a meeting in Singapore held by experts. They came to the conclusion that some animals should be taken into captivity as an insurance policy against extinction.

Seven animals were sent to zoos in the U.S, according to NationalGeographic. A decade later. Among them only three were still alive, each in a different city. At that point, the Bronx Zoo and the Los Angeles Zoo agreed to send their rhinos to Cincinnati.

Both were females while Cincinnati had the only surviving male. The problem with this species of rhinos is that their complex reproductive cycles. Many female rhinos once are easily rendered infertile. Sometime they don’t ovulate until there is a male in their surroundings.

As a last ditch effort, Harapan, the only alive male rhino is being transported to Sumatra. He will be accompanied by a zoo keeper and a zoo vet. The U.S. and Indonesian governments both need to sign permits for the transportation. Many have been signed already.

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