Rhinoceros it’s a word from Greek which means long horned from Rhinos, meaning ‘nose’ and Keratos menaing ‘horn’, often abbreviated to Rhino, Rhinos are species from the Native of Africa and three to southern Asia.
Rhinos are one of the largest species that exceed more than one tone of weight. Rhinos have a herbivorous diet, small brains form animals of their size, one or two horns and a thick protective skin formed from ability to ferment food in their hindgut that allows them to subsist on fibrous plant matter when its necessary, the African species of rhinoceros lack teeth at the form of their mouths instead on their lips.
Rhinoceros are killed by humans for their horns which are used for many purposes such as medicine, ornamental and many more. Although their largest market is in Vietnam and East Asia
Their horns cost as much as Gold on the black market, they have a believe that if Rhino horns are grinded and consumed the dust has a therapeutic properties.The horns are made of Keratin, the same types used for protein used for hair and fingernails. The Indian species are called javan Rhinoceros with one single horn while the African species is called the Sumatran rhinoceros they have two horns.
The African species are white rhinoceros and black rhinoceros, the main difference between black and white is the shape of their mouth, and the white Rhinos have broad flat lips for graining, and where as the black Rhinos have long pointed lips for eating foliage.
There are two species of white rhinoceros, the southern white rhinoceros and the northern white rhinoceros .the southern sub species of Rhinos has a number of wild populations making them subspecies in the world. However, the northern subspecies is critically endangered, with few individuals left in the world.
The white rhino has a body and a large head, a short neck and broad chest. Females weigh about 1,600kg and males’ 2400kg.the head and body length is 11-15 feet and height 7 feet.
The two horns, one is in directed in the front of the Rhino and it’s the largest than the other in length which is about 150cm.The white Rhinoceros have prominent muscular hump that supports its large head.
The color of the Rhino ranges from yellowish brown to slate grey. Most of the hair body is found on the ear fringes and tail bristles, white Rhinos have flat broad mouth that is used for grazing.
Rhino’s reproduction system, they go mating at the age of 7 and 8 years. The bigger and stronger males are successful in mating. While females can start mating at the age of 5 and 6.The Adult Rhinoceros always find time for mating.
The males are aggressors that always get accepted by females. Although these Rhinos can be seen fighting between females and males because male Rhinos don’t always take in answers when it’s time for mating. After mating they will go separate ways.
The male continues to look for other females to mate with. It takes about 15 -16years of pregnancy. The female will nurse the young one as well as feeding the young one with milk for the forests year of life. However the offspring will be introduced to grass and plants when their about a week old. They will feed as well as on rich milk. Later on they will stay with their father for at least 2years to 4 years. Generally the females are able to stay with their mothers for the long period of time. When the male reach the age of 2 years they run off and find their way, it a extremely difficult for them to survive in their own territory.
They will be pushed away from the outer rim of the areas because the older and strong males’ will have various stakes at many locations. And this will result into young ones to find it difficult to be able to find enough food and water.
Rhinos with large horns are killed thou they can move into territories, in spite of being aggressive animals, female Rhinoceros is very attentive and caring towards its young one. She may seem thriving to the needs of her young ones .Rhinoceros communication and behaviors are observed careful.
White Rhinos live for 40-75years of age in the wild while the black Rhinos live for 35-50 years.
The fact that mothers carry their young ones for more than a year keeping them close this becomes a huge problem when it comes to increasing of their numbers. The females take three years to mate again; this will cause the males to be aggressive to the extent of killing the young ones in order to get an opportunity to mate with females.
These young Rhinoceros at times fall victim of crocodiles, wild dogs, and large cats. The larger they become in size the more chances of surviving to grow into adulthood. However they face a problem of human hunting, where by people keep on hurting for their horns.
In captivity they usually remove the young one from the mother so that she is willing to mate again. Their other measures taken to thrive the young ones and ensure them of survivor.
In Uganda they can be trekked at Ziwa Rhino sanctuary which is collaborating its efforts between Uganda Wildlife Authority, the Rhino fond Uganda, one of the Ugandan Ngo committed to the restoration of Rhinoceros population and Ziwa Ranchers limited, one of the private land management company. The sanctuary offers a secure place where Rhino population can expanded by breeding, protected from human and non-human predators who gradually re-introduced into Uganda’s National parks, at some point they allow the public to enjoy the majestic animals.
NOTE: In Uganda we have the White Rhinos living in Ziwa Rhino sanctuary, a habitat for white Rhinos.