Friday, 17 November 2017

The Story Behind That Viral Photo of a Lonely Rhino


By Stephanie Pappas, Live Science Contributor | November 10, 2017 04:02pm ET

Want to know what extinction looks like? This is the last male Northern White Rhino. The Last. Nevermore

The tweet went viral on Nov. 6: a photo of a lone rhinoceros, resting with its chin on the dusty ground of a wooden enclosure. Accompanying the photo, the caption read, "Want to know what extinction looks like? This is the last male Northern White Rhino. The Last. Nevermore."

The photo struck a chord, though the rhino in it has been the last of his kind for years now. The second-to-last male northern white rhino (Ceratotherium simum cottoni), Angalifu, died at the San Diego Zoo in December 2014. That left a single male, Sudan, shown in the viral photograph, who turns 44 this year and is very unlikely to produce any more offspring.

Sudan's story may not be new, but the stark framing of the tweet by biologist and activist Daniel Schneider earned the lonely male more than 44,000 retweets and 1,700 replies. Unfortunately, it will take more than awareness to save northern white rhinos from extinction. At this point, it may take a technological miracle. [In Photos: The Last 5 Northern White Rhinos]


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