Double rhino milestones at the zoo

Published: 27 Sep 2016

Two rhino calves have reached major milestones in their development at Taronga Western Plains Zoo.

Dafari, a male Black Rhino calf, turns one today. Rajah, a male Greater One-horned Rhino calf, will mark six months since his birth on 25 April.

Environment Minister Mark Speakman said that to have two healthy calves, whose species are endangered in the wild, progressing well at Taronga Western Plains Zoo was an outstanding achievement.

“The zoo is now operating successful breeding programs for three of the five surviving species of rhinoceros in the world, namely the Black, Greater One-horned and White Rhinoceroses,” Mr Speakman said.

Dafari, born 20 April last year, is the second calf born to mother Bakhita, and the twelfth Black Rhino calf born at the zoo.

Rajah, born 25 October, was the first Greater One-horned Rhino calf to be born in Australia.

Rajah’s birth was a result of over 15 years of planning, enthusiasm and commitment from zoo staff, keepers and veterinarians.

Taronga was one of a small number of zoos chosen globally by the International Rhino Foundation in 1992 to rapidly develop a conservation breeding program for the Black Rhinoceros, as the species faced a catastrophic decline.

The zoo has also been directly involved in supporting the Indonesian-led program for the Sumatran Rhino, of which only about 100 survive.

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