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Northern white rhino update

Posted on: 17.06.10 (Last edited) 26 October 2010

Stubborn woman, new friends and new housing arrangements.

Here’s an update from FFI’s partner the Ol Pejeta Conservancy on its four northern white rhinos – Najin and Fatu (females) and Suni and Sudan (males):

We are happy to announce that Najin has finally permanently moved into the large 700 acre breeding area, by Sudan’s side. But it was easier said than done.

It took our team about three weeks to get Najin out of the bomas and the 400 x 400 metre enclosure. She simply refused to go through the gate.

The team tried everything, including coaxing her with food, planting about 50 bushes around the gate so she would feel more secure – since she seems to like thick vegetation so much – and we even tried to bring Fatu back with her, with no success. The two females showed absolutely no interest in each other!

After three weeks, on the morning of the 28th of May, she finally decided to move into the breeding area. All it took was a bit of food to convince her. She was done being a stubborn girl.

Sudan has now permanently moved into the 700 acre enclosure, along with Najin and six southern white rhinos.

There is one female with a calf, called Arimiet, who is showing particular interest in Sudan. But our old boy has been shy, especially if the calf is around! He will run the other way as soon as he sees the calf.

Najin is also starting to show some interest in Sudan and it is looking quite promising. He is less nervous around her. We have been taking dung samples every three days for analysis as we believe Najin is about to go into season. We are hoping for some amorous activities soon!

Suni and Fatu now spend the whole day together in the 400 x 400 meter area and are brought back to the boma every night.

We need to make sure that Sudan and Suni have no contacts through the fence, especially at night, so this one of the reasons for putting him back in the boma in the evening. Suni and Fatu are getting along really well, but are not yet showing any interest in each other.

You can read more about the rhinos at the Last Chance to Save the Northern White Rhino website.

Photo credits: Ol Pejeta Conservancy.

Written by
Rebecca Foges

Rebecca has been working at FFI since September 2007. Though she studied conservation in her BA and MSc, she decided that the life in the jungle just wasn't for her. Having grown up in New York City, she has experienced more pigeons and squirrels than parrots and spider monkeys. So she decided to write about the impact that FFI's projects have on the ground. Her current role as Communications Officer (Business & Biodiversity) has allowed her to focus her energy towards FFI's innovative Business & Biodiversity Programme. Rebecca helps to get the message out about FFI's strategic corporate partnerships and what they have helped to achieve for global biodiversity.

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