Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) Fact Sheet, 2003
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|Describer (Date): Linnaeus (1758)
Species: Diceros bicornis (Black Rhino)
Body Weight: 1,000 - 1800 kg; (2200 - 3970 lbs)
Head/Body Length: 2.9 - 3.75 m (9.5-12.3 ft)
Shoulder Height: 1.4 - 1.8 m (4.6-5.9 ft)
Tail Length: 60-70 cm (2.0-2.3 ft)
Pelage: Hair only on fringes of ears, and tip of tail. Thick, gray, heavily-folded skin covers the body; color often obscured by dirt.
Horns: Two; located on the rostrum. Composed of keratin (protein composing hair); no bony core. Not shed annually.
Diagnostic Characters: Upper lip pointed and prehensile, capable of grasping objects; unlike the White Rhino whose lip is squared-off and non-prehensile.
|Distribution & Status||Behavior & Ecology|
Range: Widely scattered populations, Subsaharan Africa. Most commonly present in Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Namibia.
Habitat: Savannahs; not found in closed canopy forest.
IUCN Status: CR, Critically Endangered
CITES Appendix: I or II
Population in Wild: Approximately 3,100
Locomotion: Tend to be fairly sedentary. Share established trails with elephants.
Activity Cycle: Active both day and night. Least active during hottest part of day (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.).
Social Groups: Semi-solitary, but usually tolerate each other's presence with litte aggression.
Diet: Leaves and small twigs.
Predators: Humans; young may be vulnerable to attacks by lions and hyenas.
|Reproduction & Development||Species Highlights|
Gestation: 15 - 17 months
Litter Size: 1 calf
Birth weight: 27 - 45 kg (59.5 - 99.2 lb)
Independent of mother: 2.5 to 3 years
Longevity: c. 40 years.
Feature Facts: Heavily hunted for horns (for purported medicinal use); population decreased by 94% between 1970 and 1990. Earliest record of captivity- 3rd century BC by the Romans. Slow increase in population size since 1995 due to aggressive protection.
About This Fact Sheet
© 2003 San Diego Zoo Global. Minor updates in 2013, 2015.
How to cite: Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) Fact Sheet, 2003. c2003. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Global; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd]. http://ielc.libguides.com/sdzg/factsheets/blackrhino.
(note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Jan 15)
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