Time is running out for Javan Rhinoceros

March 6th, 2009 - 10:46 pm ICT by GD  

The Javan Rhinoceros, the most endangered mammal in the world, is being pushed towards extinction at an alarming rate.

There are less than 60 of these beasts in the wild, concentrated in one Indonesian National Park and low birthrates have made the numbers decline rapidly for the first time in decades, according to Christy Williams, the WWF’s Asian Rhino Specialists.

He said :We need to take immediate, urgent action to try to move some of these rhinos to another suitable site, either on Java or Sumatra island. If we don’t act quickly, I think we could lose this population.”

The Javan rhino is about 5000 pounds heavy and more than 10 feet long. According to conservationists no other mammal in the world is as endangered as these rhinos.

Fifty of these rhinos live in Indonesia’s Ujung Kulon National Park and it is alarming that only three of their females are breeding, says Adhi Rachmat Hariyadi, who is the leader of the project undertaken by the World Wildlife Fund and Indonesia to save these mammals from extinction. He says that the park may have reached its maximum potential and now it is a matter of survival so the rhinos compete with each other to share the limited resources in the park.

With only three breeding rhinos, only one calf is born every year where four times that would require the population to survive. One rhino dies every year so sustenance is of prime importance in the park. The government has undertaken a search to find another suitable spot for breeding the rhinos and to help protect the population from dying out in a natural calamity or disease. According to researchers Vietnam has a very small population of Javan rhinos in the wild but they seem to have stopped breeding.

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