Jakarta, Nov 27 (EFE).- The birth of at least two Sumatran rhinoceroses this year in the Way Kambas National Park on the Indonesian island of Sumatra has given hope to authorities for the conservation of this critically endangered and protected species.
On Saturday, a male calf was born thanks to breeding program efforts in Way Kambas, the second birth this year after a calf born at the end of September, and the fifth in this area since 2012.
“This further confirms the commitment of the Government of the Republic of Indonesia in carrying out rhino conservation efforts in Indonesia, especially the Sumatran rhino,” Minister of Environment and Forestry Siti Nurbaya said in a statement.
The new calf, which was found by national park guards with her 7-year-old mother Delilah on Saturday, “can now stand upright and walk.”
The little male, who has also been seen nursing from his mother while standing up, was born 10 days ahead of schedule and weighs about 25 kilograms.
“This fifth birth at [Way Kambas] provides encouragement for all of us to continue to do our best to preserve the Sumatran rhino,” Siti said.
According to Indonesian authorities, there are currently less than 100 Sumatran rhinos in the four sanctuaries set up throughout the country to keep this species, considered critically endangered and included on the International Union for Nature Conservation’s Red List due to facing an extremely high risk of extinction in the wild.
Unlike the rhinos of India and Java (also in Indonesia), the Sumatran rhinoceros is the only Asian rhinoceros that has two horns, like the African rhinoceros, to which it is not related.
Sumatran rhinos were decimated by poaching to obtain their horns for traditional medicine. EFE