DEC 29, 2019 7:33 AM PST

Zoo in Michigan Sees Birth of Critically Endangered Black Rhino

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

Staff caring for a pregnant 12-year-old black rhino named Doppsee at Lansing, Michigan’s Potter Park Zoo had a lot to be excited about this past Christmas Eve. The first-time mother delivered a healthy newborn calf at approximately 5:40 A.M. Tuesday morning, and the youngling was already standing on its own four feet just over an hour later.

Say hello to Doppsee's newborn black rhino calf.

Image Credit: Potter Park Zoo

"This is a monumental moment for Potter Park Zoo that has taken our staff years of planning and hard work," Potter Park Zoo director Cynthia Wagner explained in response to the miraculous event. We are dedicated to conserving rhinos and couldn’t be more excited about this successful black rhino birth."

The newborn black rhino calf was classified as a male, but it has not yet been named at the time of this writing. Notably, he was the first black rhino calf ever born at Potter Park Zoo, and staff are hopeful that he won’t be the last.

Footage of the newborn black rhino can be seen below:

Related: Sana, the world's oldest captive white rhino, has died

Black rhinos are formally recognized as Critically Endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)’s Red List, and while conservationists originally thought that the future looked bleak for the humble species, things appear to be taking a turn for the best as breeding and conservation programs continue and population numbers gradually increase.

Black rhinos are endemic to the desert and shrubland regions of Central and South Africa, and conservationists estimate that there are about 5,000 of them remaining in the wild today. The animals’ numbers were driven down substantially in the 20th century, and modern-day animal poachers have only continued to threaten their well-being.

Several dozen black rhinos are living in captivity at zoos across the U.S. in which they partake in breeding programs much like the one seen here at Potter Park Zoo. While captive births are somewhat rare, they do help boost population numbers, and conservationists will take all the help they can get.

Related: Can scientists revive the Northern white rhino?

Doppsee and her newborn calf are just one small success story of many. Potter Park Zoo staff note that the Doppsee and her newborn will be hidden from park goers until the Spring due to the cold weather. In the meantime, the park will publish regular updates about the calf’s health and well-being via social media.

Source: ABC News, Potter Park Zoo, IUCN

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
APR 17, 2020
Earth & The Environment
APR 17, 2020
Earth Just Had its Second Warmest March
The planet continues to set climate records, which is certainly not great news. Earlier this week, the National Oceanic ...
APR 28, 2020
Genetics & Genomics
APR 28, 2020
Evolution Observed in Fish in a Single Generation
In a five year study, scientists have now shown that stickleback fish were able to alter some of their traits within a s ...
JUN 14, 2020
Plants & Animals
JUN 14, 2020
Giant Hornet Queen Struggles to Establish Her Nest
Giant hornets are among the world’s largest and deadliest hornets, which might explain why they’re so revere ...
JUN 15, 2020
Plants & Animals
JUN 15, 2020
Tasty Pigeon Just Barely Outflies a Hungry Falcon
It’s dog eat dog out there, especially in the animal kingdom. But this well-received idiom referring to the ruthle ...
JUN 30, 2020
Plants & Animals
JUN 30, 2020
Consequences of Sixth Mass Extinction Threaten Humanity
Many scientists have taken note of the rapid decline many of the world species, and several have declared that Earth's s ...
JUL 05, 2020
Plants & Animals
JUL 05, 2020
A New Way to Estimate a Dog's Age
People have long thought that a dog's age can be estimated by substituting one human year with seven dog years.
Loading Comments...