South-western black rhinoceros
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The south-western black rhinoceros (Diceros bicornis occidentalis) is a subspecies of the black rhinoceros. It is currently listed as vulnerable by the IUCN. The biggest threat towards the subspecies Diceros bicornis occidentalis is illegal poaching.
This subspecies is often mistaken for either the extinct southern black rhinoceros (D. b. bicornis) or the southeastern subspecies (D. b. minor). However, the populations in the arid areas of northern Namibia and southwestern Angola represent a separate subspecies.
The south-western black rhino, like all black rhino subspecies, has a distinct prehensile lip and is a browser. It differs from the others because it has the largest and straightest horn. They also are most adapted to arid habitat and can be found in arid savanna and desert climates.
Population and threats
Historically, this subspecies once roamed in Angola, and Namibia, but their current range has decreased. The stronghold of the species is primarily in Namibia. One to four specimens have been reported from Angola and others were introduced to South Africa. The total population is increasing and numbered to 1920 animals in 2010, with 55.8% adults. Poaching due to increasing horn prices is considered the main threat to the population
- Emslie, R. (2011). "Diceros bicornis ssp. bicornis". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2011.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/39318. Retrieved 18 January 2012.
- Groves, C.; Grubb, P. (2011). Ungulate Taxonomy. Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press. pp. 317. ISBN 987-1-4214-0093-8. http://books.google.de/books?id=v3uZtA1ZpTAC&dq=diceros+bicornis+subspecies&hl=de&source=gbs_navlinks_s. Retrieved October 7, 2012.
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