All Hail The King: Lincoln Park Zoo's Baby Black Rhino Gets A Name And Makes Public Debut
By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 19, 2013 2:00PM
That Eastern Black rhinoceros born last month at Lincoln Park Zoo is making great strides. Earlier this week the calf, which now weighs 200-pounds, made his public debut at the zoo’s Harris Family Foundation Black Rhinoceros Exhibit with his mother, Kapuki.
The calf also has a name—“King.” Named after King Harris, a longtime patron of the zoo who sits on its Board of Trustees with his wife Caryn and for whom the rhinoceros exhibit is named
Black rhinos are critically endangered and were nearly driven to extinction in the 1990s. They are a major target for poachers, mainly due to a misconception in some cultures that their horns have medicinal value. Recent estimates put the total number of wild black rhinos at around 5,000. Lincoln Park Zoo has housed black rhinoceroses for over 30 years, including King, Kapuki and King’s father, 27-year-old Maku.
In addition to the breeding program that resulted in King’s birth, Lincoln Park Zoo supports the species through field work in their native South Africa, collecting. information on rhino hormone levels, parasites, and sleep patterns so that they have a better understanding of how to manage and conserve the species.
“King will serve as an excellent ambassador for his species,” said Lincoln Park Zoo Curator of Mammals Mark Kamhout.
Check out King and Kapuki at Lincoln Park Zoo from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. daily, while the weather cooperates.