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White Rhino

Afrikaans name: Wit Renoster

White Rhinos relaxing in the sand in the early morning

Photo © Steven Herbert

Ceratotherium simum

Interesting facts about White Rhinos

Another, more appropriate, name for the White Rhino is Square-lipped Rhino. The Black Rhino would then be Hook-lipped Rhino.

There is a lot of speculation about where the name of White Rhino comes from. One theory is that it is derived from the Dutch word 'Wijd' which means wide and not white.

Males can reach up to 4 metres in length. Females are a bit smaller. At the shoulder they can be up to 1.8 metres in height. Males weigh around 2,300 kg.

White Rhinos have two horns. The front one is the longest and can, in extreme cases, be up to 1.5 metres in length.

The preferred habitat of the White Rhino is savanna or open grassland. Their main food is grass.

Rhinos are well-known for the dung middens they make. These are spots in their range where they will drop their dung. These middens can often be seen on or alongside roads in game reserves. Males have well-defined territories which they will defend from other males.

White Rhino need a lot of water and males will allow other males to pass through their territories to go and drink or wallow in the mud.

White Rhinos may be seen by themselves or in small herds.

A trio of White Rhino at Tala Game Reserve

Photo © Steven Herbert

White Rhino and Cattle Egrets

Photo © Steven Herbert

Above - What does it take for a tired White Rhino to get some peace and quiet? Photographers in noisy diesel bakkies and pesky Cattle Egrets are interrupting my sleep! Cattle Egrets are sometimes called Tickbirds because they eat ticks off large mammals. The Cattle Egrets also keep close to larger mammals to catch any prey items flushed out by the larger animal.



List of South African Mammals

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