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A Rhinoceros Story

Lena Kofoed

Rhinoceroses. The great relative of the elephant. There are 5,055 left in the wild. That is why the Denver Zoo is lucky to have received a new member of the zoo family, Rudy the rhinoceros.
 
Rudy (Rudisha) was transferred here from the Oklahoma zoo. Rudy was welcomed here when their previous Black Rhino Machindi died last September.
 
Rudy is very tactile. At 22 years old and 2600 pounds, he is very playful.
 
They are endangered because people believe that their horns heal everything from bad diseases to the common cold. It is considered valuable in East Asia. Their horns are made of keratin, which is what your fingernail is made of.  The main thing that threatens black rhinos is humanity. Loss of habitat. Poaching. Everyone around the world is trying to keep the population of rhinos alive.
 
Rudy has already had two calves in Kansas, so the Denver zoo is not planning to get Rudy a mate.
 
A usual gray rhino that we see is a bit more social than a black rhino. Black rhinos are more solitary than a gray rhino.
 
Rudy, unlike other black rhinos, has a reddish tint to him, which makes him more unique. Rudy also has a carved 2nd horn from grating it against surfaces. Black rhinos usually live in the Sub-Sahara of Africa, mostly in Namibia, Tanzania and Kenya.
 
Rudy currently has a 30 day quarantine and will be let outside in a week when finished. His trainer, Dave Johnson, says that Rudy likes browsing on branches and enjoying a bath.  Rudy says for you to come visit him at the Denver Zoo!