West Midland Safari Park celebrated the birth of a baby southern white rhino this month, the second for the park in 18 months.
After a lengthy pregnancy of 16 months, first-time mum Keyah gave birth to the youngster on 8th September, with the female calf weighing in at an impressive 70kg (11 stone)!
The first female calf to be born at the park for 15 years, the baby rhino will now spend time getting used to the great outdoors, first in the paddock and later in the reserves where she will join other the rest of the herd.
In the wild, southern white rhinos face a huge threat due to habitat loss and poaching. The birth is great success for the park’s white rhino breeding programme, and follows the arrival of the new calf’s half-brother, Ekozu, born in March last year.
Head Keeper of Ungulates, Lisa Watkins said, “The team are really pleased that all of their hard work has resulted in this fantastic healthy calf. Keyah has taken it in her stride and is proving to be a fantastic mother. The calf is feeding well and settling into the daily routines.”
She continued, “With the current threats that rhinos are facing in the wild, this birth is even more important to the population as a whole. Breeding in zoological collections provides a valuable safety net for their wild counterparts.
For more information on visiting West Midland Safari Park go to www.wmsp.co.uk