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World's last male northern white rhino 'ill'


Posted on Friday, 2 March, 2018 | Comment icon 13 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 (13)

Tags: Northern White Rhino

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #4 Posted by Piney on 2 March, 2018, 3:27
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 on 2 March, 2018, 3:40
Several.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Ford Fairlaine on 2 March, 2018, 5:07
Poor thing. That's a shame.
Comment icon #7 Posted by Brandy333 on 3 March, 2018, 6:07
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 seanjo on 3 March, 2018, 20:10
Needs his testicles emptying and freeze the sperm, if they haven't already.
Comment icon #9 Posted by DirtyDocMartens on 4 March, 2018, 4:23
Feels like they're just postponing the inevitable, very sorry to say.
Comment icon #10 Posted by seanjo on 4 March, 2018, 10:32
Adapt or die. Or, stop over-populating the planet with Humans that each have an ecological footprint.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Jon the frog on 5 March, 2018, 17:11
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 #12 Posted by Still Waters on 6 March, 2018, 12:31
 
Comment icon #13 Posted by Sir Smoke aLot on 9 March, 2018, 18:45
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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