Apart from Sumatran orangutans, there are other unique animals on the island. For example, there’s Sumatran rhino (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis). It’s considered as the smallest one among others. The government has considered it as one of the most endangered animals in Indonesia. That means it has the same title as the Javanese rhino. Both of them are threatened species. There is no more than a hundred rhino left in Sumatra. In other countries like Malaysia, they no longer exist. In order to learn about this species, people need to know some Sumatran rhino facts.
About Sumatran Rhino
First, it’s about their physical description. As mentioned earlier, they are the smallest among other rhinos. They are the only rhinos in South East Asia that come with two horns. The adults have bristly color while the young ones have reddish brown color. The size of their front horn is about 25-79 cm long. What about the posterior horn? It’s small. The length is 10 cm maximum. Their height is approximately 2-4 meters. When it comes to weight, they can reach more than 900 kg.
What about Sumatran rhino habitat? This species loves to live in lower altitudes. They live mostly in forests where there are many available plants. They also live in montane forests and lowland swamps. Most of them live solitarily. The females are likely to avoid each other. It’s because they are territorial. The males often mark their area with urine, saplings, and scrapes. In the age of 6, the females reach their sexual maturity. The males take longer than that, actually.
Every 3 years, they give birth to a calf at a time. Usually, the calves are born in October-May. It’s during the rainy season in Sumatra. The calves reach their independence at the age of 17 months. Before that, they depend much on parents. The approximate lifespan of Sumatran rhino is about 30-40 years. What about the foods? They love fruits, bark, leaves, and twigs. They also come to cultured areas to eat crops.
Most of them can be found in some forests of Sumatra. Their population is low, though. This species also lives in other parts of the world. These include China, Thailand, India, and more. There’s a reason why they become an endangered animal. It’s because of the human. There are also many major threats such as habitat loss. Human settlements and agriculture cause are the reasons for forest conversion. This ruins Sumatran rhino’s habitat. So, why are Sumatran rhinos endangered? The answer is human’s greed.
Today, many Sumatra rhinos live in Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park. Forest conversion remains a big issue in the island, though. Not to mention there are poachers. They look for rhino horn greedily. The fact is that rhino horn is quite precious. It’s used as a traditional treatment of numerous diseases. It also becomes a status symbol in some cultures. Another threat is the declining genetic diversity. Diseases and catastrophes also become major issues. Overall, it seems hard to deal with those threats. Both human and nature give Sumatran Rhino hard times. Are they going to extinct?