Photos Prove Nearly Extinct Sumatran Rhino Is Still Alive

For the first time in 26 years, seven Sumatran rhinos were filmed on hidden cameras this week in an Indonesian national park. Some feared the critically endangered species had become extinct in the region.

Experts believe there are less than 200 Sumatran rhinos left in the world, but on Thursday seven of them were sighted in the Mount Leuser National Park in Indonesia. It is the first sighting in 26 years. The group of six females and one male were caught on infrared cameras set up in the northern tip of the park.

“This discovery can allay doubts over the rhino’s presence in the park,” Tarmizi, team leader of the Leuser International Foundation told AFP. He added he hoped the discovery would encourage more efforts to conserve the species.

The Leuser International Foundation set up the cameras late last year in two locations in the park where they thought the rhinos might be living.

“The team brilliantly acquired more than 1,000 images showing the Sumatran rhinos in excellent condition,” said LIF.

“We hope that this number can increase when we finish our survey at several other locations.” The researchers are optimistic they will eventually find an estimated 25 rhinos.

Sumatran rhinos, which are the smallest of their species, have dropped in population by 50 percent over the past 20 years due to poachers and the logging industry that has destroyed much of their habitat.

The LIF team ran into indications of illegal forest activity that could threaten the survival of the rhino and other animals during their study. With evidence on film, authorities will now be better prepared to stop the poachers and loggers.

The LIF study was funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Mount Leuser National Park is home to 710 animal species, with 180 of them declared endangered. It is the only place where the Sumatran rhino, Sumatran orangutan, Sumatran tiger, Sumatran elephant and Malayan sun bear all live side-by-side. All are on the endangered list.

In June a baby Sumatran rhino was born in captivity. It is the fourth birth in more than a century.


Related Stories:

Endangered Cheetah Cubs Named For US Olympic Runners

Rescued Manatee Gives Birth To Healthy Calf


Photo Credit: InternationalRhinoFoundation

Love This? Never Miss Another Story.


Ivor D.
ivor D.2 years ago

What a load of Stupid Twats they'v even produced a map where the poachers can find them, Another one for the poachers I'm Afraid. When will you learn.


Fiona T.
Fi T.2 years ago

Please never let them only be seen in books

Jacqueline Fonseca

This is great news, however, I'm sad about the illegal logging and the poaching in the protected area! How will the animals {that have been here long before man} and mother earth ever survive mans greed for more land, for power, and the lack of compassion for someone other then themselves?!

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W.3 years ago

great news

A C.
A C.3 years ago

Thanks so much for this article and the update on these nearly extinct animals! So glad this survey was done and that they will have the evidence to bolster support to stop the poachers and loggers!

Carolyn Smith
Cally Smith3 years ago

Wonderful news. This sounds like a VERY precious place.....why oh why can we not keep it from being destroyed? Can we not spare any space for wildlife????

Cindy B.
Cindy Black3 years ago

Isn't it wonderful how ALL BABIES -- even rhinos, walruses and the like -- ARE JUST INCREDIBLY CUTE?! I'd love to plant a kiss on that little one's forehead. .

I HOPE AND PRAY THAT THE CHINESE DON'T HEAR ABOUT THESE LAST FEW RHINOS. Some fatcat businessman, aiming to impress his fatcat clients with the rarest possible dinner fare, will offer, like, $50K for a baby rhino and we'll have every poverty-striken farmer in the country on the prowl to poach one. Noooo, they don't have anything against rhinos... but they want to feed their umpteen starving kids.

It simply breaks my heart that this scenario is so common, and that the fatcats in question (mainly Asians, and mainly Chinese) are so utterly morally bankrupt.

ann paveletz
.3 years ago

Photo proves mother relaxing with her off spring.. Mother nature is beautiful and live animals are better than dead ones.
This is a statement that should be given to all trophy hunters before they book a trip to kill a helpless animal just to bag a trophy. a picture is worth a 1000 words. the hunter should learn how to use a camera instead of a firearm on a safari. Ann

Maree Ann Peterson

Save the rhinos!! dont tell the poachers where they are next time, and I hope they increase in Population!

Maree Ann Peterson

Save the rhinos!! dont tell the poachers where they are next time, and I hope they increase in Population!