‘The baby has arrived!’ Critically-endangered black rhino calf is born at Kansas City Zoo on NYE – one of just 740 of the species left on Earth
- Black rhino Zuri gave birth to a calf on December 31, adding to the endangered species’ dwindling population
- The baby’s sex will be determined in the coming weeks during a neonatal exam
- One the baby’s sex is determined, the public will be ask to help name the calf
- Only about 740 eastern black rhinos still exist throughout the world
A baby black rhino calf was born at the Kansas City Zoo on New Year’s Eve, becoming one of just about 740 members of the species remaining on Earth.
The zoo made the announcement on Facebook Thursday, saying that their rhino Zuri had given birth on December 31.
The baby’s sex will not be determined for a few weeks, as a neonatal scan will be performed to do that and also see that the baby is healthy, the zoo said.
Once they have figured out if the calf is a male or female, the Kansas City Zoo will hold a ceremony to choose the baby’s name.
A baby black rhino calf was born at the Kansas City Zoo on New Year’s Eve, becoming just the 740th member of the species remaining on Earth
The zoo said that Zuri, the baby’s mother, is in good health and spirits and walking around, nursing and even playing.
They added that ‘Zuri is a patient and attentive first-time mother.’
The zoo has limited human interaction to Zuri’s area so that she and her calf can have time to bond, an important part of raising rhino calves.
In a Facebook post, the Kansas City Zoo highlighted how important birthing the healthy baby is for the black rhinos.
‘There are only about 740 of this type of rhino left in the wild, so this birth is also important for the subspecies as a whole,’ they wrote. ‘We are thrilled to introduce this new arrival to Kansas City!’
The rhino came to Kansas City in the spring of 2018 with the baby’s father, Ruka, from a zoo in Oregon. Zuri was born at the Cleveland Zoo, while Ruka was born in St. Louis.
The Kansas City Zoo made the announcement on Facebook Thursday, saying that their rhino Zuri had given birth on December 31
The rhino came to Kansas City in the spring of 2018 with the baby’s father, Ruka, from a zoo in Oregon. Zuri was born at the Cleveland Zoo, while Ruka was born in St. Louis
While Zuri gave birth in Kansas City, the species is largely native to Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa.
There are about 50 eastern black rhinos that live in zoos across the world, according to the Association of Zoos & Aquariums.
The species generally takes between 15 and 16 months of gestation before giving birth.
Zuri’s pregnancy included ‘weekly ultrasounds and blood hormone monitoring,’ while ‘animal care specialists trained with her in preparation for the regular checkups, so she was able to participate in her own care by patiently standing for the ultrasounds.’