Former Cincinnati Zoo rhino Andalas becomes a dad - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Former Cincinnati Zoo rhino becomes a dad

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

The International Rhino Foundation (IRF) and the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden are pleased to announce the birth of a bouncing baby boy Sumatran rhino!

The calf was born to mother, "Ratu", a 12-year-old Sumatran rhino living at the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary in Indonesia's Way Kambas National Park and father, "Andalas," born at the Cincinnati Zoo in 2001 and the first Sumatran Rhino calf born in captivity in 112 years.  

In 2007 he was sent to the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary with hopes that he would eventually sire calves with one or more of the females at the Sanctuary. 

The healthy and active calf was born on June 23 at 12:46 a.m. with no complications and weighs 60-70 pounds. 

"To say that we are thrilled is an understatement," said Dr. Terri Roth, Vice President of Conservation and Science and Director of the Cincinnati Zoo's Lindner Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife (CREW). "When we celebrated the monumental birth of Andalas at the Cincinnati Zoo in 2001, we never imagined he would play such a pivotal role in the survival of his species.  This international collaboration is conservation work at its finest." Dr. Roth has been working in SE Asia for over a decade.

There are currently fewer than 200 Sumatran rhinos living in Indonesia and Malaysia.

This is the first birth of a Sumatran rhino in an Indonesian facility and the first birth in an Asian facility in 124 years.

"We are overjoyed that Ratu delivered a healthy calf and are cautiously optimistic that the calf will continue to thrive," said Dr. Susie Ellis, executive director of the International Rhino Foundation. "The little guy is absolutely adorable, and none of us has been able to stop smiling since the moment we were sure he was alive and healthy. We have been waiting for this moment since the sanctuary was built in 1998. The International Rhino Foundation is honored to play an important role in protecting rhinos. We are hopeful the Sumatran rhino population will thrive once again."  

Copyright 2012 WXIX. All rights reserved.

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