World Rhino Day – making a difference one rhino at a time

World Rhino Day – making a difference one rhino at a time

It’s World Rhino Day, and we want to celebrate with you!

Did you know that there are only about 30,000 rhinos left in the world? That’s why it is so important to protect them. One way you can help is by not buying any products made from rhino horns or other endangered animals. Today, let’s all pledge to be animal-friendly shoppers!

On 22 September, we celebrate this day to raise awareness and money for the fight against rhino poaching. Poachers kill rhinos every day because of their distinctive horns that are used in traditional Asian medicine or sold illegally on the black market as trophies. Some people believe that the rhino’s horn cures cancer and other diseases. This is why many poachers kill them for their horns, even though no scientific studies support these claims. We could lose these amazing creatures forever if nothing is done to stop it!

Fun facts about rhinos

In honour of this day, we would like to share some fun facts about rhinos:

  • There are five species of rhino

Two African rhinos, black and white, and three Asian, greater one-horned, Sumatran and Javan rhinos. Three of these, the black, Sumatran and Javan, are listed as ‘critically endangered’ by IUCN. There are thought to be fewer than 70 Javan and 100 Sumatran rhinos left in the wild, meaning their populations are truly under threat of extinction.

  • They’re BIG

Sumatran rhinos are the smallest, but they can still weigh up to 600kg. White rhinos are the largest, weighing up to 3,500kg. Impressive considering, they mainly eat grass and leaves. White rhinos are the second-largest land mammal in the world; only elephants are bigger.

  • The name rhinoceros means ‘nose horn’

It comes from Ancient Greek words: rhino (nose), ceros (horn).

  • White and black rhinos are the same colour

Despite the names, both species of African rhino have a grey skin colour. The most noteworthy difference between the two species is their upper lip. The black rhino has a hooked lip, while the white rhino has a square lip. Because black rhinos browse instead of graze, the hooked lip helps them munch on leaves from trees and bushes. In addition, white rhinos have a longer skull, a less defined forehead and a more obvious shoulder hump.

  • They’re fast

Despite their titanic, tank-like bulk, the rhinos can be surprisingly fast: the fastest can reach at least 50 kilometres per hour.

  • Their horns are like our fingernails

Rhino horn is made up of keratin, the same protein that forms our hair and nails. Their horns grow continuously during their lifetime – the white rhino’s horn can grow 7cm every year – and the record length is 150cm long!

Yet, there are still cultures that believe in the medicinal value of rhino horns. Over 7,100 African rhinos have been killed by poaching in the last 10 years – that’s around 2 every day. Poaching gangs are becoming increasingly sophisticated.

It’s important that we spread awareness about this animal on World Rhino Day so they can be saved from extinction! Join in this year by donating money or spreading awareness through social media and word-of-mouth so we can save these beautiful animals before they’re gone forever. Let us know what types of things you’ll be doing today on Facebook and Twitter using #WorldRhinoDay. Be sure to tag @SandtonCentral so we can see your posts too!