September 23, 2021 7 min read
Rhinos are big, bulky, and absolutely brilliant. These mighty creatures are some of the biggest animals in the world and are known for their awesome, giant horns that grow from their snouts – hence the name “rhinoceros’, meaning “nose horn”. Javan and Indian rhinos have one horn, whereas the white, black, and Sumatran rhinos have two. But, they need our help. Poaching of rhinos for their horns and habitat loss are huge threats to both white and black rhinos. To save and protect these creatures, World Rhino Day has been celebrated for more than a decade. It has grown into a global phenomenon, uniting NGOs, zoos, cause-related organizations, businesses, and concerned individuals from nearly every corner of the world!
World Rhino Day is celebrated on September 22 every year to extend awareness to protect them from going extinct and carve a safe, natural habitat for this incredible species. "Five Rhino Species Forever" is the theme of this year’s World Rhino Day as it is dedicated to both the African and Asian rhino species.
All five of the world's diverse species of rhinoceros White, Black, Indian, Javan, and Sumartran have been brought to the edge of extinction because of the human desire for their distinctive horns. The horns are in great demand as they have medicinal properties. World Rhino Day is an opportunity to highlight efforts to debunk the myths and diminish the demand for rhino horns to protect them.
The one-horned rhino, also called the Indian rhinoceros, is listed as a vulnerable species. They are mostly found in the foothills of the Himalayas, in India, and Nepal. The rhinoceros has been on our planet for millions of years.
White rhinos (the name doesn’t come from their colour but originally a reference to their ‘wide’ mouths) have had mixed fortunes. Sadly there are no ‘northern’ white rhinos left in the wild and only a handful in captivity. But the ‘southern’ white rhino is a conservation success story – it’s been helped back from under 100 in 1895 to over 20,000 in the wild today.
Nearly 96% of black rhinos were lost to wide-scale poaching from 1970 to 1992. Only 5,000 are left in the wild today. Poaching of rhinos for rhino horn is the prime threat, and the poachers have got increasingly better equipped over the years.
Protecting Rhinos isn't important just because they’re a precious link to our planet’s ancient past. Rhinos also play a crucial role in their environment.
We can take a step forward to promote the agenda of World Rhino Day by using sustainable wood, paper, and palm oil to protect their natural habitat and avoid using any rhino products. Between 2013 and 2017, around 1,000 rhinos were illegally killed each year, compared to 13 in 2007.
Many national parks and forest reserves also offer volunteering programs. You can be a part of such programs to closely monitor their habitat and wildlife and learn all about rhinos.
If you are someone who loves to read about the incredible fauna of our home planet, then stay tuned to our Animal Kingdom series.
In case you're looking to add some fun to your learning methods, head to the Practically app to uncover an immersive learning experience via lifelike simulations, 3D videos, and AR experiences.
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