Sudan, the last male northern white rhino on our planet has died due to “age-related complications”, marking a sad day for conservationists and animal lovers worldwide. Sudan, who was 45 years old when he died, lived at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, where he was protected and looked after by conservationists.
After suffering from muscle and bone deterioration and extensive skin wounds, the decision was made to euthanise Sudan on Monday evening after his condition meant that he was unable to stand. Prior to this, he had spent two weeks lying in his pen due to the discomfort caused from a deep wound on his leg.
Over recent years Sudan has become well-known around the world as a symbol of the destruction that humans have brought upon the planet. In an attempt to save the subspecies from becoming extinct, huge efforts were made to get him to mate with the two surviving females of his kind, 27-year-old Najin and 17-year-old Fatu. Following these failed attempts, a Tinder dating profile was even created for the rhino, in an attempt to raise the $9million funds needed for fertility treatment.
The conservancy’s CEO, Richard Vigne, commented, “He was a great ambassador for his species and will be remembered for the work he did to raise awareness globally of the plight facing not only rhinos, but also the many thousands of other species facing extinction as a result of unsustainable human activity.”
Rhinos are being poached in such high numbers due to the demand for rhino horn, which is made from the exact same substance as our own hair and nails. Increased awareness and education is needed to stop further sub-species from going extinct.
I’m Jess Murray, wildlife conservationist, photographer and writer. Follow my Facebook page and Instagram account to be part of the journey. I like to document the natural world and create awareness through my writing so that your future can be sustainable and positive.
Image Featured/Credit: Wikimedia Commons