Welcome back! Today’s topic is about a wild animal. It is black rhinoceros! You probably ever heard about them, right? The black rhinoceros, blak rhino for short, or also known as the hook-lipped rhinoceros. You can find them in the wild of eastern to southern Africa, like Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, and more. They are quite popular, aren’t they?
Let’s know deeper about them with the list of amazing facts about black rhino below!
Amazing Facts of Black Rhino Who Lives in America
1. The confusion from the name
Do you know that not until 1911, black rhino used to be named as the double-homed rhinoceros (Rhinoceros bicornis)? In 1758, Carl Linnaeus named it as the double-homed rhinoceros, but it sparked debate and confusion because it mixed up with the skull of single-homed Indian rhinoceros (Rhinoceros unicornis), with a second horn artificially added by the collector.
2. Extinct Subspecies
There are at least seven subspecies of black rhino that spread across the Africa, which are Cape black rhinoceros (D. b. bicornis), North-eastern black rhinoceros (D. b. brucii), Chobe black rhinoceros (D. b. chobiensis), Uganda black rhinoceros (D. b. ladoensis), Western black rhinoceros (D. b. longipes), Eastern black rhinoceros (D. b. michaeli), South-central black rhinoceros (D. b. minor), and South-western black rhinoceros (D. b. occidentalis).
Sadly, three of them became extinct due to excessive hunting and habitat loss, including the Cape black rhinoceros , North-eastern black rhinoceros (D. b. brucii), Western black rhinoceros (D. b. longipes).
3. The size of black rhino
The size of the black rhino is close to the Java Rhino. Both are smaller than the white rhino. The adult black rhino can grow up to 3 to 2,75 meters in length and typically weighs from 800 to 1.400 kilograms. The largest one that has been recorded weighs to 2.896 kilograms! Generally, males are larger than females. And for the horns, the front horns can grow up to 50 cm in length.
4. The use of the horns
Just like most rhinos, the black rhino use their horns to defend themselves, to intimidate their opponent, and to dig roots and break some branches to find foods.
5. The differentiation between the white rhino
Besides the body size where the white rhino is bigger than the black rhino, we can also distinguish the black rhino and the white rhino from their lips form. The black rhino has a pointed and prehensile upper lip that can help it to grasp twigs and leaves, while the white rhino has square lips to help it graze and eat grasses.
6. The skin of black rhino
Even though they are called the black rhino, their skin is actually in dark grey. The black rhino have a thick-layered skin, just like a shield to protect them from sharp grasses, twigs, or thorns. Usually, it also grows parasites like mites or ticks on it, which may be eaten by egrets or oxpeckers.
7. Eyesight and 180-degree ears
The black rhino used to be assumed to have poor eyesight, but lately, it has been known that they have comparatively good eyesight like rabbits! The black rhino can also rely on their hearing ability. The wide ears of black rhino can rotate in every direction to detect sounds even over the vast distance.
8. Solitary behaviors
Naturally, black rhino love to be alone. They are solitary, but not very territorial. The wide of their territory can vary depending on the seasons and food or water source. Some of them might also use to intersect with other rhinos. Due to this solitary behavior, black rhino uses to identify themselves with scent marking by using their urine. They tend to spray their urine on trees, bushes, and around the feeding areas.
9. Sleep patterns
The sleep patterns of black rhino are pretty interesting. Studies show that the male rhino sleep longer, estimated to nearly double time than the females. The duration of their sleep might be affected by the location of where they sleep, too!
10. Mortal combat in black rhino
The black rhino can be super aggressive, especially when they feel threatened. They also like to fight with each other a lot of time, which makes them have the highest rates of death due to combat or fighting among the mammals. About 50 percent of the males and 30 percent of females die from fights. The wildlife is crazy, isn’t it?
11. The favorite foods
As herbivorous, the black rhino use to eat plants, branches, bushes, thorny, and fruits as well. They primarily stick to the dwarf shrubs too. The black rhino, however, are not a picky eater because they can eat up to 220 species of plants and able to live without water for up to 5 days, which are beneficial during the drought season.
12. Declined Population
Black rhino’s population declined significantly in the 20th century. They are hunted down by hunters and settlers with the poaching horn. Thankfully, many conservation centers are built for them across Africa as an attempt to keep the number of their population and save them from getting hunted. However, black rhino remain critically endangered. Various threats faced to them including from habitat changes, illegal poaching, and also from their combating behavior. Besides, the war situation in Africa, especially in Cameroon, Rwanda, and Somalia is worsening their habitat and their population number.
That is all about some of the amazing facts about black rhino, from their confusing name, their size, their behavior of diet, sleep pattern, how they love to be alone but also like to fight at the same times, and the devastating fact about their population. They are one of the most extraordinary wild animals that we know, yet posing a lot of threats that might lead them to extinction. Not only due to global warming that changes their habitat, but also from illegal pouching. Hopefully, there will be more attempts to save their population so we still can see them roam around freely in nature for the next future.