The black rhino is one of the five species of rhino. Despite its name, this rhino is usually grey or brown in colour. It can be distinguished from its counterpart, the white rhino, by possessing a hooked lip as opposed to a wide square lip.
As the African rhinos evolved, the black rhino’s mouth was better adapted for browsing on vegetation and the white rhino was more suited to grazing grass and small vegetation. The black rhino is also smaller than the white rhino.
Adult black rhinos can reach 1.4-1.8m in height and 3-3.75m in length. Their weight can vary, but an average would be around 1-1.5 tonnes, although some have been recorded to reach almost 2.9 tonnes. Even with a large body mass, the rhinos are still capable of running speeds of around 30-35mph. Once they have reached adult size they don’t have any natural predators, however, young or injured rhinos may be targeted by crocodiles and lions.
The rhinos’ horn is an important tool, used for digging up roots, branches and defence. It continues to grow as it is made of a protein called keratin, the same protein found in your hair and fingernails. The rhino then have to file it into a desired horn-shape by rubbing it against hard surfaces.
Extinct In The Wild