Why is the rhino so called?

In the African savannahs and forests of Asia, the largest mammal after elephants lives - the rhinoceros.

What rhinos look like

The animal got its name because of the large horn that adorns the nose of the muzzle. Sometimes some animals also have a second horn, located closer to the frontal part. It consists of the same protein substance as the hair and claws. Very durable, it helps the rhino defeat any enemy.

White rhinos (Ceratotherium simum)

In rhinos, the body is not completely proportioned. With a massive body, the legs are short and thick. Fingers ending in hooves - and there are three of them in a rhino - are a feature of all equidrop animals. The muzzle is elongated, elongated. Skin color - all edema of gray-brown color. Thick skin around the neck is gathered in rough folds.

In general, the entire skin of the rhino is covered with numerous wrinkles and folds in which the parasites live. They feed on birds that accompany animals constantly.

Young Sumatran Rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis)

Unlike their long-standing ancestors - woolly rhinos, now on the animal’s body wool can only be seen in the form of tassels on the ears and a thin tail. Only the body of one of the rhino species is covered with rare hairs.

Indian or Shell Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis)

Rhino species

Currently, only 5 species of rhino are distinguished:

  • Sumatran. Very rare species. It is he who is the oldest of the species, so there is wool on his body. It lives on the islands of Borneo and Sumatra.
  • Javanese. Some representatives of this species can be found only in the national parks of the island of Java.
  • Indian. It inhabits the wet meadows of the Hindustan Peninsula.
  • White. Lives in the savannahs of Africa.
  • The black. The habitat is the same as the white rhino.
A female white rhino with a cub on the shore of Lake Nakuru.

The main difference between the species from each other is the coloring of the skin and the way of nutrition. All types of rhinos, despite their size and awesome appearance, feed on plant foods. A black rhino eats leaves from trees, capturing them with a protruding lip. The rest prefer to eat grass.

A tramp examines a rhino ear

Features of behavior and lifestyle

African rhinos live in small groups of up to 15 individuals. Asians have no herd feeling, and they prefer to live alone. Rhinos do not form couples. In the mating season, the male has to take care of the female for a long time, until after some period of aggression, accompanied even by fights, comes down to him.

Female black rhino (Diceros bicornis) with a two day old

The female carries one cub for a long time, 15-18 months. He is born large, already at birth, his weight can reach 60 kg. It feeds on breast milk for up to a year.

Rhinos are nocturnal. They sleep during the day in an unusual position: with their muzzle facing the ground and legs bent under themselves.

Listen to the voice of the rhino


A typical savannah is the small herds of rhinos that eat grass peacefully. They move slowly from place to place, but in case of danger they can run quite quickly, at a speed of up to 35 km / h.

A grown rhino cub is playing with its mother

Rhinos are characterized by inexplicable hostility towards elephants. Seeing him, rhinos with stubbornly bowed head rush into battle. At the same time, they never succeed in defeating the mighty elephant, and young elephants often run away in fright.

In addition to elephants, not a single animal dares to attack rhinos. Only a man with a gun poses a real threat to them.

Javanese rhinoceros (Rhinoceros sondaicus).

Interestingly, these animals, with good sense of smell and hearing, are hard to see. Therefore, a person can come very close and shoot. But if the beast saw danger in time or was wounded, then developing a huge speed for him at 50 km / h, he can simply trample a man in a rage.

Amputation of rhino horns

People hunt rhinos mainly because of the horn. Until now, mystical properties are attributed to him, although science has proved that there is nothing unusual in them. Because of poaching, almost all rhino species are on the verge of extinction. Therefore, in some natural parks, the horn is even cut down, which preserves the populations of this animal.

Rhinoceros after removing the horn.

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