Africa's Western Black Rhino: An Extinct Species

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Endangered species help to gauge the health of ecosystems and can help individuals become more conscious of their environments and conservation issues around the globe. In recent years, various species and subspecies of rhinoceros have become threatened, endangered, and even extinct. One such subspecies, which was not only endangered, but has been declared extinct inhabitat as of June 26, 2013, is Africa's Western black rhino (Lavina, 2013). The black rhino is the smaller of the two African rhinoceros species and are further divided into four subspecies including the Western Diceros bicornis longipes, Eastern Diceros bicornic michaeli, Southwestern Diceros bicornis bicornis, and the South-Central Diceros bicornis minor (Factfile: black rhino, 2013). Black rhinos stand at approximately 1.6 meters high, can weigh between 900kg (female) to 1,350kg (males), have two horns that vary in shape and size depending on region, are dark gray in color with hair on the ears, tail tips, and eyelashes (Factfile: black rhino, 2013). Compared to the white rhino, black rhinos are smaller, have a less pronounced hump on the back of their necks, have smaller heads, are browsers (meaning they eat from higher bushes or trees), and have a hooked lip, as opposed to the flat-based lip their white rhinoceros counterparts posses (Factfile: black rhino, 2013). One of the primary reasons black rhinos have been hunted to extinction or near extinction is the demand for their horns, which are believed

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