WEST Midland Safari Park has announced the birth of their first Indian rhinoceros calf in nearly 50 years.
Arriving earlier this week on Tuesday September 8 at 2:29pm, the yet unnamed male calf, is the first Indian rhino to be born on site in the Park’s 47-year history.
Deputy Head Keeper of Ungulates, Shelley Tudor, said “We are absolutely delighted and have been waiting a long time for this moment. After holding this species of rhino for over ten years, this is our first calf to be born at the Park.
“We acquired Seto and Rap as youngsters and have been able to watch them grow and mature over time; which makes it even more momentous to see them produce their own calf. He is a very special addition to the Asian rhino House, and we look forward to watching him develop, and maybe go on to produce his own little rhinos in the future!”
The rhino calf’s parents, eleven-year-old Seto and twelve-year-old Rap, can often be spotted by guests at the Asiatic section of the drive-through Safari, near to the state-of-the-art Indian rhino House built at the Park in 2009. Both Seto and her calf are bonding well together in a private area where keepers can observe them at a safe distance as they settle in.
Also known as the Greater One Horned rhinoceros, Indian rhinos are placid animals who are often recognised for their armoured and prehistoric appearance.
The new arrival is not currently available for viewing, but he will eventually join his family at the Wild Asia section of the reserve where guests will be able to spot him roaming the plains and having lots of fun, likely covered in mud!
The Park is home to two types of rhinos – six Southern White rhinos and three Asian rhinos. Both species face threats in the wild such as poaching and habitat loss and are classed as ‘near threatened’ (white rhino) and ‘vulnerable’ (Asian rhino), by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature.
The calf is currently unnamed, but the Park can reveal it will begin with the letter ‘I’ mirroring the naming of all other animals born on-site in 2020.
West Midland Safari Park is fully open, and the Indian rhino can be seen as part of the four-mile safari.
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