An endangered, rare black rhino was born in full view of tourists at the Chester Zoo in Cheshire, England on Saturday. Malindi delivered a bouncing, baby rhino in about 15 minutes after a 15-month pregnancy. Usually rhinos give birth at night, but this time Malindi introduced her amazing offspring to park visitors in the middle of the day.
According to the Chester Zoo, both mother and son are doing well. Within 15 minutes of his birth, the little guy – labeled by the zoo “as the most handsome baby rhino on the planet,” was up on his feet and nursing from his 12-year-old mom.
“With just 650 Eastern black rhino left in the wild, seeing the birth of a new calf and it’s very first step is a very rare and special event indeed,” stated Tim Rowlands, the curator of mammals at the zoo. “The new born was delivered onto soft wood mulch and within next to no time it was up on its feet and running around – it couldn’t have gone any smoother.”
It is hoped the calf’s birth will renew energies into saving this almost extinct species. Poachers have decimated the rhinos in pursuit of the animals’ horns which are sold on the black market because of their value to the Asian medicine market. No proof exists that the ground up horns offer any medicinal benefits.
The Chester breeding program now boasts 11 black rhinos born in the last 20 years and has high hopes of increasing the population in Europe. Malindi gave birth to another calf in 2013.
Need a reason to smile this morning? Check out the mom and baby video:
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