Apr 26, 2017 03:20 AM EDT
The Kenyan wildlife authorities decision to guard Sudan, its last surviving male northern white rhino comes across as their last-ditch effort to save the famed horn animal from extinction. The African and Asian nations have failed to curb the killing of Rhinos and today their ever-decreasing population states a sorry figure.
According to CNN, the male northern rhino is on the verge of extinction and all hopes are pinned on Sudan the 43-year-old, 2,270 kg weighing white male rhino. Sudan and two female rhinos are the only three surviving rhinos in the world and any hope of the future of this sub-species completely depends on these three. Despite having two prospective female partners, Sudan is unable to mate because of age and some other factors.
With the Asian rumors of Rhino horn having magical medicinal healing powers, the killing of the poor animal is at an all-time high. In fact, experts believe Rhino horn business is more profitable than even the drugs. For the safety of Sudan, the Kenyan government has facilitated round the clock armed guards apart from the radio transmitters fixed on the animal for 24-hour monitoring.
Experts believe that Sudan's age may play a spoilsport in his mating attempts. George Paul, the deputy veterinarian at the conservancy believes Sudan may not be in a position to properly mount on the female rhinos. Also, Sudan's low sperm count is a worry apart from one of the female rhinos having weak hind legs and susceptible to support a mounted male rhino.
According to Mail Online, this particular reserve was chosen because of its successful black rhinos breeding track record in the past. The only other male northern white rhino 'Suni' died last October putting the complete onus on Sudan. These giant rhinos have no natural predators in the wildlife because of their size but human hunting has made their low survival rate alarming. With their ivory fetching as much as £47,000 per kilogram, these animals are under great threat from poachers.
The guards protecting the white rhinos including Sudan and his two female counterparts are themselves under risk from the poachers and keeping these animals safe is increasingly becoming very expensive. With as many as 40 guards safeguarding these rhinos 24-hours daily, the Kenyan government is looking for tourists' contributions and crowdfunding support to protect these animals.
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