Critically endangered black rhino gives birth

Critically endangered black rhino gives birth
© Lincoln Park Zoo

A rhinoceros that belongs to a critically endangered species has given birth at a zoo in Chicago after a 15-month-long pregnancy.

The Lincoln Park Zoo announced over the weekend that 13-year-old  Kapuki, a black rhinoceros at the zoo, gave birth to a calf. 

“After 15 months of pregnancy and a relatively quick labor, we’re excited to announce Kapuki gave birth!” the zoo said in the first of a series of tweets welcoming the baby rhino.

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“Kapuki’s maternal instincts kicked right in and she has been seen tending to the calf. The next big milestones will be for the calf to stand and begin to nurse,” the zoo added on Twitter.

The zoo said in another tweet that the calf is being monitored from afar by the zoo’s animal care and veterinary team in its first days to give Kapuki and her baby more “privacy.”

“The calf continues to surpass milestones! Animal care continues to monitor from afar as Kapuki cares for the calf,” the zoo said Monday. “Since last night, the calf has been observed nursing several times. The first 48 hours of a calf’s life are critical and we remain cautiously optimistic.”

According to estimates from the World Wildlife Foundation, fewer than 5,500 wild black rhinos remain in the world. The species is native to Africa.