Dublin Zoo ‘thrilled’ with birth of baby rhinoceros

Children invited to suggest name for calf of mother Ashanti and father Chaka

 

Dublin Zoo has welcomed a new 60kg baby – an as yet unnamed white rhino calf.

It was born last Thursday afternoon, and becomes the seventh member of a growing herd of the once-endangered animals alongside mother Ashanti and father Chaka in the zoo’s African Savannah section.

There are now 20,000 white rhinos left in the wild after poachers whittled their numbers down to a low of around 50 in the early 1900s. Dublin Zoo’s latest arrival comes as part of the European Endangered Species Programme which was established to assist the survival of the species.

“We are absolutely thrilled with the new arrival. Ashanti is an experienced mother and the birth was very relaxed. The mother and calf are bonding and will remain very close for the first year of his life,” said African Plains team leader Helen Clarke-Bennet.

Male rhinos can grow to be up to 2,300kg in size, and are mostly found in South Africa, Namibia, Kenya and Zimbabwe, where Dublin Zoo is teamed with the Lowveld Rhino Trust.

Children have been invited to suggest a name for the new calf at www.DublinZoo.ie, and it will host a “Rhino Awareness Weekend” on September 24th and 25th to teach visitors about the animals and the threats they face in the wild.