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Countdown to extinction – Suni the white rhino dies. Only six white rhinos remain on the planet.

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Calling it a “sorry testament to the greed of the human race”, rangers found the lifeless body of Suni the white rhino in his hut on a Kenyan wildlife conservancy this week. Suni was 34 years old when he died and was one of only seven northern white rhinos left on the planet. That leaves six white rhinos on Earth, only one of which is a male, so sadly, the countdown to extinction has begun.

The northern white rhinoceros is also called the “northern square-lipped rhinoceros” [Editor Note: Geek Slop said he has yet to hear of a scientist getting punched for calling the rhinos this to their face but suggests we remind the kids that he cannot promise the same if they call any of their friends by this name].  The northern white rhinoceros is one of two subspecies of white rhinoceros. Poachers hunting the animals for their horns reduced the population to 15 white rhinos by the 1980’s. They are extinct in the wild and only live in zoos.

Scientists say that northern white rhinos do not mate very often. The last time Suni mated was in 2012 with Najin and it was her first time to mate in ten years. The outlook for any of the surviving northern white rhinos producing offspring is not looking very good.  Presently you can still see a northern white rhino in the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, Africa or the Zoo’s Safari Park in San Diego, California.

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