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Spanish zoo hails rare white rhino birth

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Spanish zoo hails rare white rhino birth
An adult white rhinoceros can weigh up to 2,300kg (5,100lb). File photo: Wikimedia
13:57 CEST+02:00
A white rhinoceros was born in a Spanish safari park recently in what was an extremely rare birth in captivity for the species.

The male rhinoceros cub was born on September 19th at the Parque de la Naturaleza de Cabárceno in Asturias.

The cub — an example of the southern subspecies of the white rhinoceros — was born to first-time mother Zola after a 16-month pregnancy.

His birth weight was a hefty 50kg (110lb) and he began walking within about 15 minutes, the zoo reported.   

The newborn and his mother are now in a separate enclosure, away from the other rhinoceroses at the park, including the cub's 27-year-old father Sagan.

The baby rhino, who doesn't yet have a name, can now be viewed by visitors, the zoo told The Local. 

White rhinoceros are very difficult to breed in captivity. Females give birth only every four of five years. The Cabárceno park tried for 16 years to impregnate a female white rhinoceros.

Southern white rhinoceros were on the verge of extinction 100 years ago, but a strong population rebound meant there were 17,460 white rhinoceros in the wild in 2007.

The northern white rhinoceros is very rare with only seven animals confirmed in existence.

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