Nepal's Rhino population up by 16.5 pc in last 5 yrs

The number of one-horned rhino in Nepal has increased by 16.5 per cent in the last five years, despite an increase in cases of natural death and incidents of poaching.

Nepal's Rhino population up by 16.5 pc in last 5 yrs

A census conducted between March and April revealed that the number of endangered species has increased by 107 in the last 5 years despite a surge in natural deaths and incidents of poaching.

One-horned rhinoceros, also known as Indian rhinoceros, is a rhino species native to the Indian subcontinent. It is listed as ‘vulnerable’ on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List.

In the earlier census conducted in 2015, the population of one-horned-rhino stood at 645 which in a span of five years has increased to 752, Nepali officials announced.

“The number of rhinos has increased by 107, now the total number stands at 752 in various protected areas of Nepal. The highest number of rhinos are now residing in Chitwan National Park where the number stands at 694. Likewise, 38 are in Bardiya National Park, 17 in Shuklaphanta National Park and 3 in Parsa National Park,” Dr Bishwa Nath Oli, Secretary at Ministry of Forests and Environment told ANI over the phone.

Of them, 146 are male, 198 are female whereas 408 have not been identified sex-wise. Based on the age, there are 520 adult rhinos, 96 semi-adults and 136 calves.

Earlier, the count of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros remained constant from 2019 to 2020 due to the budget crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the last five years, a total of 161 rhinos were found dead in and around Chitwan National Park out of which five were killed by poachers whereas the remaining died due to natural causes.

Originally published at Ani