Black Rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis) Fact Sheet, 2003
Image credit: San Diego Zoo Global. All Rights Reserved.
|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)
Disclaimer: Although San Diego Zoo Global makes every attempt to provide accurate information, some of the facts provided may become outdated or replaced by new research findings. Questions and comments may be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.