Scientific Name: Black (Diceros bicornis), white (Ceratotherium simum)
Lifespan: 35 to 40 years
Size: Height at shoulder, 4.5 to 6 feet (1.4 to 1.8 m)
Weight: 1,760 to 3,080 lbs (800 to 1400 kg)
Protection status: Endangered
The rhinoceros is a large, primitive-looking mammal that in fact dates from the Miocene era millions of years ago.
What does a rhinoceros look like?
The white rhino's name derives from the Dutch "wijd," meaning wide, a reference to its wide, square muzzle adapted for grazing. The white rhino, which is actually gray, has a pronounced hump on the neck and a long face.
The black, or hooked-lipped, rhino, along with all other rhino species, is an odd-toed ungulate (three toes on each foot). It has a thick, hairless, gray hide. Both the black and white rhino have two horns, the longer of which sits at the front of the nose.
Where do rhinoceroses live?
Black rhinos have various habitats, but mainly areas with dense, woody vegetation. White rhinos live in savannas with water holes, mud wallows and shade trees. The black rhino once roamed most of sub-Saharan Africa, but today is on the verge of extinction due to poaching fueled by commercial demand.
What does a rhino eat?
The black rhino is a browser, with a triangular-shaped upper lip ending in a mobile grasping point. It eats a large variety of vegetation, including leaves, buds and shoots of plants, bushes and trees. The white rhino, on the other hand, is a grazer feeding on grasses.
Black rhinos feed at night and during the gloaming hours of dawn and dusk. Under the hot African sun, they take cover by lying in the shade. Rhinos are also wallowers. They often find a suitable water hole and roll in its mud, coating their skin with a natural bug repellent and sun block.
Did You Know this about the rhino?
The black rhino declined drastically in the 1970s and 1980s due to poaching. To prevent extinction, many rhinos were translocated to fenced sanctuaries in the early 1990s. This effort appears to be succeeding, as 1994 was the first time in 20 years that rhino numbers did not decline.
A rhinoceros' horn is not a true horn. True horns are attached to the skull; a rhino's horn is made of keratin fibers (the main component of human hair and nails) and grows from the skin.
The Sumatran rhinoceros is the smallest and most primitive of the five rhino species, and the closest living relative to the woolly rhinoceros, which went extinct around 10,000 years ago.
The rhinoceros belongs to a once extremely diverse superfamily that includes aquatic rhinos, pig-sized rhinos and the giraffe-sized Indricotherium, one of the largest land mammals to ever live.ago.
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Rhinoceros Coloring pages
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