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Nature & Environment

World's last male northern white rhino 'ill'

By T.K. Randall
March 2, 2018 · Comment icon 11 comments



Things are looking bleak for the northern white rhino. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Guy lemal
Conservationists have reported that the health of the last male northern white rhino is rapidly deteriorating.
Few species on Earth are as critically endangered as these animals and now, with a mere three individuals remaining, the fate of the northern white rhino hangs in the balance.

Situated in Kenya's Ol Pejeta Conservancy, this lone trio remains under armed guard at all times.

Now to make things even worse, the male of the group is suffering from serious health problems, bringing the species, which is already hanging on by a thread, one step closer to extinction.
According to reports from Kenya's Ol Pejeta Conservancy, the rhino had recovered well from a leg infection he had developed last year but now another, deeper infection seems to have taken hold.

"We are very concerned about him - he's extremely old for a rhino and we do not want him to suffer unnecessarily," said a spokesman for the conservancy.

Not all is lost, however. Scientists are currently working on efforts to bring the species back from the brink by using southern white rhinos as surrogates to carry northern white rhino embryos.

If the method works, it could at least prevent the species from disappearing entirely.



Source: Phys.org | Comments (11)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #2 Posted by Piney 5 years ago
†Once again the attempt at conservation is a day late and a dollar short.......
Comment icon #3 Posted by mysticwerewolf 5 years ago
save the dna.† we can repopulate them† someday in the future
Comment icon #4 Posted by Piney 5 years ago
Clones aren't genetically sound. You need the variables of a large population. Even if they manage to create offspring with the ones that are left the gene pool is "bottle necked" and there will be negative traits that are "nicked". https://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/bottlenecks_01
Comment icon #5 Posted by ChaosRose 5 years ago
Several.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Ford Fairlaine 5 years ago
Poor thing. That's a shame.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Brandy333 5 years ago
Old age is a factor in the Rhino's reduced ability to fight the infection.† At least he and the other two are heavily guarded.
Comment icon #8 Posted by DirtyDocMartens 5 years ago
Feels like they're just postponing the inevitable, very sorry to say.
Comment icon #9 Posted by Jon the frog 5 years ago
It's a subspecies, therefore putting is DNA back in the remaining populations of white rhino's can be a good idea to keep biodiversity.
Comment icon #10 Posted by Still Waters 5 years ago
Comment icon #11 Posted by Sir Smoke aLot 5 years ago
I would measure greatness of humankind by the state of other beings, especially those which are endangered. Did i say greatness? Silly me. †


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