Take the time to make an informed decision

We use cookies to make your visit to our website as user-friendly and as personal as possible. These cookies enable us to analyse the website, improve user-friendliness, and offer you the most relevant information. Controlling your online privacy is important, which is why we ask that you take the time to make an informed decision. Please read how we deal with privacy and cookies.

Hopeful rhinoceros breeding at Burgers' Zoo
Terug

Hopeful rhinoceros breeding at Burgers' Zoo

Thursday, 15 August 2019
Hopeful rhinoceros breeding at Burgers' Zoo

On 15 August 2019, a square-lipped rhinoceros calf was born at Royal Burgers’ Zoo. The young bull looks to be in good health. Since 2002, the Arnhem zoo has been remarkably successful at breeding rhinoceros: as many as ten rhinoceros have been born in the capital of the province of Gelderland, including one stillbirth. A total of 269 square-lipped rhinoceros live in European zoos, 116 bulls and 153 cows. On average, only ten square-lipped rhinoceros are born each year in Europe.

The first images

Causes that make breeding more difficult

Not all adult bulls are fertile, and rhinoceros cows often develop cysts in the uterine horns. As a result, the sperm can no longer reach the egg, or the egg cannot come loose from the ovary. The cysts can also block the egg from passing through the fallopian tube, or the fertilised egg from nestling in the uterine wall. Young cows being hormonally suppressed by their mothers is another problem zoos face. In this situation, the young cows only become fertile after being transferred to another zoo, which lifts the oppression.

A less solitary rhinoceros species

Of the five rhinoceros species alive today, the square-lipped rhinoceros has the most social behaviour. Whereas the other four rhinoceros species live in solitude and only temporarily visit each other during mating season, square-lipped rhinoceros live in small herds of adult cows and their young. As a rule, the cows in these herds are closely related. The bulls live alone and demarcate their territory by depositing dung piles along the borders as scent flags.

Successful breeding at Burgers’ Zoo

To ensure successful breeding of square-lipped rhinoceros, it is beneficial, given their natural behaviour and social group structure, for the animals to have plenty of space at their disposal, so that they can avoid each other or, on the contrary, visit each other. In Arnhem, the breeding bull lives a more or less solitary life, usually avoiding the company of the cows and their young. In the mating season, the bull will seek contact. Burgers’ Zoo has a fertile bull and two cows, both of which have given birth multiple times.

Comments


More news


Swedish elephant migrates south

Swedish elephant migrates south

Thursday, 22 August 2019

On Friday 23 August 2019, a 51-year-old Asian elephant cow from the zoo in Kolmarden, Sweden, will arrive at Royal Burgers’ Zoo. This elderly female will keep the 53-year-old elephant cow already in Arnhem company.

Read more
Summer sun brings out the bears

Summer sun brings out the bears

Thursday, 25 July 2019

After living behind the scenes for more than 2.5 months, two sun bear cubs show themselves to Burger's Zoo visitors for the first time. 

Read more