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The Great One Horned Rhino
One of the rarest mammal in the world, one horn Rhino is surviving in the north-east corner
of India, Assam. Kaziranga, Pobitora and Orang national parks of Assam account almost 95% of the
total wild One horned rhino in the world. This Great One Horned Rhinoceros is pride of Assam.
The One Horn Rhino
The third largest animal in the world, Rhino, represents a uniqueness and power of wildlife.
There are five varieties of Rhino alive in this current earth and one of them is Unicorn
Indian Rhino(Rhinoceros unicornis). Few centuries ago this sepcies of Rhino was densely populated
in all over northern India, in both Ganges and Brahmaputra valley ranging from Pakistant to India.
But the number decreased drastically from thousands to just 200 in the early 20th century. The few rhinos survived in the
grassland and foothills of Himalayan in mostly in Assam and very few in southern Nepal.
The alarming population of one horned rhinos came into notics of the Indian government and extreme
care taken to the animal across the reserve forests of Assam Specially Kaziranga where most of
the rhinos were surviving kept under strict observation. There were missions against poaching and
slowly the rhino popluation increased. In hundred years the population increased from 200 to 2500 in
2008, Kaziranga accounting 85% of the total population.
Rhinos as seen from NH-37 in Assam
Rhinos are easily visible in Kaziranga
The Indian Rhinocerous found in Assam is the largest of Asian Rhinos. That's why it is called
The Great One Horn Rhino. It is also considered to be the most amphibious rhino in the world.
It is an excellent swimmer and can run at a speed of 55 km/hr. A full grown male Rhino can
be 6.5 feet in height, 12.5 feet in length and 2500 kilogram in weight. Females are little smaller
than the males and can be 2000 kg in weight. Rhinos have very strong smelling and hearing power
but weak in eye-sight. The most uniqueness of India Rhino is the single horn, while african
rhinos have two horns. This single horn can be 8-12 inches in length.
Apart from Kaziranga National Park there are two small forests that are habitats
of Great One Horn Rhino. One is Orang National park in Darrang district and the other one is
Pobitora Wildlife Sanctury in Marigaon district. Pobitora has the highest density of rhinos
in the world, total of 80 rhinos in just 18 sq km. area.
Torture of poachers on innocent rhinos in Assam
Though the Horn of Indian rhino is their symbol of strength and power, it is the one of the
main reason of their threatended extinction. The horn and other parts like nails, skins
have very high value in Asian traditional medicinal market. The horn is believed to be
the strongest aphrodisiac in China. This is the reason why rhino horns were given extremely
high price. The poaching of Rhinos still continues in the region of Kaziranga and other
parts of Assam. There are continous efforts from Government of Assam, India and also from many
NGOs to stop poaching.
Despite all the initiatives and efforts, there were 10 rhinos killed by poachers in
Assam in 2008. There were around 53 rhinos died of natural cause the same year and 20 culves
killed by tigers.
The first ever rhino translocation mission was started by WWF in 2008. It is called 'India Rhino Vision'
2020. The goal is to increase the population of rhinos to 3000 in total of seven protected area
of Assam. The mission was started with Manas National Park by translocation of two rhinos
from Pobitora Wildlife Sanctury. Manas was once habitat of Rhinos. But in 1990s during the insurgenciesin
the area the national park and rhinos faced huge destruction.
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