The efforts of British biologists have eventually paid off. Two captive rhinos were released in the wild four years ago, and now researchers are positive that they gave birth. They were released in Tanzania, and they mate with a male rhino, which was also raised in captivity.
The two former captive rhinos are called Zawadi and Grumeti. They were both black rhino females, and the species is critically endangered. The news about newborn baby black rhinos is a significant achievement for researchers in charged with the species conservation.
Zawadi and Grumeti were kept at the Aspinall Foundation. They were transferred in Tanzania via several transportation means, including truck, boat, and plane. They were released by the foot of Mount Kilimanjaro. This is where black rhino male Jamie was also released. He was born in a special shelter in the Czech Republic.
The British specialists kept track of the two females. This is how they know that both mated with Jamie and had healthy pregnancies. The gestation period last fifteen months for rhinos. Zawadi’s and Grumeti’s babies are now only a few weeks old.
Specialists say that the babies are healthy and they are growing and developing normally. Each of them weighs seventeen pounds. Specialists also thought about giving them proper names. Grumeti’s offspring is called Mobo. Zawadi’s baby is younger, and it hasn’t been named yet.
According to experts, Zawadi and Grumeti will be quite busy for the years to come. Rhino babies spend more than three years with their mothers, who must feed them and keep them safe from predators. Researchers hope that their former captive females will be great moms, keeping their babies safe.
Conservationists are concerned about the faith of black rhinos. There are only seven hundred individuals in the wild and it is difficult for them to stay alive. The main threat against them is poaching. People hunt rhinos for their horns, which are widely used in traditional medicine.
The Aspinall Foundation has an active role in wildlife conservation. They make their best to save endangered species by raising individuals in captivity and relocating them in the wild. Eight rhinos were retrieved to Africa thanks to their program. The same thing happened with Zawadi and Grumeti.
Although the species is critically endangered, the two babies are the biologists’ new hope. There are seven rhinoceros subspecies. Despite their denomination, they are not only black, as their appearance can have several shades, from brown to gray.
Image courtesy of: Public Domain Pictures