Sudan, the last white rhino from the north, died
Sudan, the last rhinoceros male of a subspecies that is now almost condemned, has died in an animal shelter in Kenya.
In an animal shelter, the Ol Pejeta Conservancy (Kenya), Sudan died, the last male of northern white rhinoceros (Ceratotherium simum cottoni). The fate of almost all species of rhinos is linked to the will of men: decades of persecution, fueled by the fads and silly superstitions of Chinese medicine, have caused the drastic reduction of many populations of these large herbivores. The other subspecies, the southern (about 20,000 individuals), lives in South Africa, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Uganda.
Sudan, who was 45, was subjected to euthanasia for his critical condition. It was part of a last, extreme attempt to save the subspecies, because together with the male they were lodged (protected day and night by poachers) two females: unfortunately, despite the fact that they were seen mating, no baby was born.
The northern white rhinos lived in some areas of central Africa: Chad, Sudan, Uganda, Congo and the Central African Republic. The subspecies was particularly vulnerable, in particular because of the armed conflicts that have affected the region for decades.
Sudan’s death does not, however, put an end to projects for the preservation of the subspecies, because in vitro fertilization can still be used to try to obtain embryos. According to the researchers, one could start from the seed of the dead male and from the eggs of the still living females.