The two principal threats are poaching and reduced population viability. Hunting is primarily driven by the demand for the supposedly medicinal properties of rhino horns and other body parts, and many centuries of over-hunting has reduced this species to a tiny percentage of its former population and range. The species is now so reduced that there are very small numbers in each locality where it still survives. As a result, breeding activity is infrequent, successful births are uncommon in many populations, and there is a severe risk of inbreeding depression (J. Payne pers. comm.). The species is frequently stated to be sensitive to habitat disturbance (van Strien, 1986), but timber extraction is of little or no significance to the species, as it is robust enough to withstand more or less any forest condition (J. Payne pers. comm.).