Michigan Zoo Announces Birth of Critically Endangered Black Rhino
Doppsee, a 12-year-old female rhino at the Potter Park Zoo in Lansing, Michigan, gave birth to a male calf at 5:40 a.m. Tuesday, the zoo said in a blog post. It is the first black rhino birth in the zoo's 100-year history.
"This is a monumental moment for Potter Park Zoo that has taken our staff years of planning and hard work," zoo Director Cynthia Wagner said. "We are dedicated to conserving rhinos and couldn't be more excited about this successful black rhino birth."
The birth is a big deal because black rhinos are "statistically and historically very hard to breed and be successful," Pat Fountain, an animal care supervisor at the zoo, told The New York Times. Only around two black rhinos are born at U.S. Association-of-Zoos-&-Aquariums-accredited facilities every year, Fountain said.
This birth marks the first for mother Doppsee. The father, Phineus, was brought to the zoo in 2017 from Texas specifically to breed with her, the zoo said. Fountain told The New York Times that their successful coupling was a "milestone."
The calf, who is not yet named, stood about an hour and a half after he was born, the zoo said. He seems to be nursing well.
"As this is Doppsee's first pregnancy, the animal care and veterinary staff will continue to monitor Doppsee and her calf closely in the next few weeks. But so far, the rhino calf appears healthy and we have observed frequent nursing shortly after the birth, which is encouraging," Potter Park Zoo veterinarian Dr. Ronan Eustace said in the blog post.
The calf and his mother will be given space to bond in privacy until spring 2020, when they will be viewable by zoo visitors. In the meantime, the zoo will post updates on its blog, Facebook and Instagram accounts.
In the wild, black rhinos are threatened with extinction because of poaching and habitat loss.
Around 98 percent of black rhinos live in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Namibia, The New York Times reported. Their numbers fell by 98 percent between 1960 and 1995 to less than 2,500, mostly because of the actions of European hunters and settlers.World Wildlife Fund said, according to ABC News.
- Scientists Create Fake Rhino Horn to Fight Poaching - EcoWatch ›
- Black Rhinos Return to Chad 50 Years After Being Wiped Out ... ›
Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere hit a new record in 2019 and have continued climbing this year, despite lockdowns and other measures to curb the pandemic, the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) said on Monday, citing preliminary data.
- 13 Must-Read Climate Change Reports for 2020 - EcoWatch ›
- Large Methane Leaks Soar 32% Despite Lockdowns and Green ... ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
These black-and-white lizards could be the punchline of a joke, except the situation is no laughing matter.
By Isabella Garcia
September in Portland, Oregon, usually brings a slight chill to the air and an orange tinge to the leaves. This year, it brought smoke so thick it burned your throat and made your eyes strain to see more than 20 feet in front of you.
- 16 Essential Books About Environmental Justice, Racism and Activism ›
- 7 Devastating Photos of Wildfires in California, Oregon and ... ›
- Several West Coast Cities Have the World's Worst Air - EcoWatch ›
- Extremely Rare Leopard Cubs Born in Connecticut Zoo - EcoWatch ›
- Small Wild Cats Face Big Threats Including Lack of Conservation ... ›
- 5 Species Bouncing Back From the Brink of Extinction - EcoWatch ›