NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 20 – The world’s last male northern white rhino has died, leaving only two of its kind alive.
According to the Ol Pejeta Conservancy, It is believed the rhino, Sudan, died after age-related complications.
The body’s Chief Executive Officer Richard Vigne stated that Sudan the last several weeks of his life in pain because of the deep wound on his right hind leg which suffered from an infection.
“Sudan will be remembered for his unusually memorable life. In the 1970s, he escaped extinction of his kind in the wild when he was moved to Dvůr Králové Zoo. Throughout his existence, he significantly contributed to survival of his species as he sired two females,” the conservancy stated through its twitter handle.
He explained that following this, the veterinary team from the Dvůr Králové Zoo, Ol Pejeta and Kenya Wildlife Service made the decision to euthanize him.
It stated that Sudan’s condition worsened significantly in the last 24 hours and he was unable to stand up as he was suffering a great deal.
“Additionally, his genetic material was collected yesterday and provides a hope for future attempts at reproduction of northern white rhinos through advanced cellular technologies. During his final years, Sudan came back to Africa and stole the heart of many with his dignity and strength,” it said.
“We on Ol Pejeta are all saddened by Sudan’s death. He was a great ambassador for his species and will be remembered for the work he did to raise awareness globally of the plight facing not only rhinos, but also the many thousands of other species facing extinction.”
He however stated that Sudan’s death leaves just two female northern white rhinos on the planet his daughter Najin and her daughter Fatu, who remain at Ol Pejeta.
“The only hope for the preservation of this subspecies now lies in developing in vitro fertilisation (IVF) techniques using eggs from the two remaining females, stored northern white rhino semen from males and surrogate southern white rhino females.”