Second rhino calf born at West Midland Safari Park in matter of weeks

A southern white rhino calf has been born at West Midland Safari Park – the second birth in the last six weeks.

The calf has already been exploring his paddock with mother Keyah, 12
The calf has already been exploring his paddock with mother Keyah, 12

Second-time mother Keyah, 12, gave birth to a male calf at 11.40am on Sunday, June 27 at the Bewdley-based attraction, following a 16-month pregnancy.

The calf has been given a brief health check by keepers, who were able to confirm he was a healthy weight – and the youngster has already made his first tentative steps into his paddock.

The birth is the second celebration for the Safari Park in a matter of weeks – after the birth of another southern white rhino, who has been named Jambo, around six weeks ago. Both Jambo and the currently unnamed calf share the same father, and the two brothers will grow up together on park's safari drive-through.

The currently unnamed calf was born on June 27

Angela Potter, head of wildlife at West Midland Safari Park, said: "We are delighted to welcome another new calf to our crash of southern white rhino. It’s wonderful to see Keyah settling into motherhood so well, and she’s certainly going to be kept busy as her boy finds his feet.

“Celebrating another rhino birth here at the park is a fantastic achievement, and further showcases the important role we have to play in being a part of the European Endangered Species Programme.

"Raising awareness of the vital conservation efforts needed to protect all five species of rhino in the wild, will always be the driving force behind our work here.

The calf has already been exploring his paddock with mother Keyah, 12

“It’s also the first time we have had two calves born so closely together, so we can’t wait to watch them grow up as a pair, likely causing all sorts of mischief out on the safari."

As the fifth white rhino to be born at the Safari Park in the last five years, the latest birth further highlights the attraction's commitment to continuing its breeding programme – which works to create a reserve population of the animals which are listed as 'near threatened' on the IUCN red list. At the last count, just over 20,000 wild southern white rhino remained in South Africa, as a result of threats including poaching and habitat loss.

The newborn is yet to be named, and the park is asking the public to make the final decision via the attraction's Facebook page from a shortlist of names supplied by its keepers, which will take place later this week. The name will begin with ‘J’, as all names of babies born at the park in 2021 will begin with this letter.

He is the second southern white rhino calf to be born at West Midland Safari Park in six weeks

For more information about West Midland Safari Park, visit wmsp.co.uk

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