The Greater One-Horned Rhinoceros (Indian Rhinoceros) is the largest rhino species in the world. This native of the grasslands and forests that skirt India and Nepal’s Himalayan mountains now only lives in scattered and isolated groups, mostly in the eastern region of its former range. The main threats this rhino faces are poaching for its horn, for markets in China and Vietnam and conflict with humans, when rhinos stray out of their parks into nearby villages.
Taronga contributes to the conservation of this magnificent rhino through direct support of the field work of the Asian Rhino Project (ARP) and the International Rhino Foundation, which Taronga helped found in 1999. The ARP provides vital equipment such as motorbikes, hand-held radios and backpacks to equip rhino protection units for swift responses in the field. The protection of the Greater One-Horned Rhino in Nepal and Assam has helped the population increase by more than 3 per cent since 2006, even though the rate of poaching is increasing.
Taronga Western Plains Zoo’s experts in African rhino breeding are assisting the international zoo management program for Greater One-Horned Rhinos. It is hoped that soon the planned pairing of the young female, Amala, with the male, Dora, will provide offspring to help build the world’s zoo-based population of this rhino, as a long-term insurance to prevent poachers from driving the species to extinction.