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Nature & Environment Rhino Calf at San Diego Zoo Safari Gets Bottle Service

Rhino Calf at San Diego Zoo Safari Gets Bottle Service

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First Posted: Jan 21, 2013 09:52 AM EST
Rhino Calf at San Diego Zoo Safari Gets Bottle Service
The new rhino calf at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park will receive bottle feeding as a part of her daily nutritional routine from the zoo keepers. (Photo : (Photo : Ken Bohn, San Diego Zoo Safari Park) )

A new rhino calf at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park will receive bottle feeding as a part of her daily nutritional routine from zoo keepers.

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Born Dec. 15 and weighing 245 pounds, the rhino calf Shomili has been nicknamed 'Mili' by zookeepers. She receives bottle feeding as her mother Sundari has failed to give the calf necessary nutrition.  Mili weighed just 128 pounds at birth.

This is the first time that the zoo keepers noticed Sundari having trouble in producing sufficient milk for her calf.

In an official statement, the zoo keepers said Sundari is a young mother and her milk is not coming in the way keepers expected. A decision was made by the animal care staff to give supplemental bottle feeding twice a day to make sure Shomili gets the nutrition a young, growing rhino requires.

Sundari and Mili are one-horned rhinoceroses, with Mili being the 65th greater one-horned rhino born at the zoo.

The greater one-horned rhinoceros is the largest of the three Asian rhinos. Together with the African white rhino, it is the largest of all rhino species. The San Diego Zoo Safari Park consists of the largest crash of rhinos and has a record of maintaining a successful captive breeding spot for rhinos anywhere in the world. Prior to Mili, it was Charlees who was the 61st greater one-horned rhino. It was born at the Safari Park in 1975.

The previous year, it was reported by San Diego Zoo Global that the greater one-horned rhinoceros numbers 2,800 and it is being listed as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

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