One of the world’s last four remaining northern white rhinos
has died in a zoo in the United States.
The condition of Nola, a 41-year-old female, had
deteriorated after surgery and she was put down on
Nola had been a popular attraction at the San Diego Zoo
Safari Park since 1989.
The remaining three northern white rhinos – all elderly – are
kept closely guarded at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya.
Nola underwent surgery on 13 November to drain a hip
abscess. However, her health deteriorated a week ago and
worsened again over the weekend and it was decided she
should be put down.
The northern white rhino population was devastated by
poachers seeking their prized horns, and was declared
extinct in the wild in 2008.
San Diego zoo has recently brought in six southern white
rhinos, hoping to use them as surrogate mothers for
northern white rhino embryos.
There are about 20,000 southern white rhinos in the world,
but studies are still taking place to determine whether the
subspecies are genetically similar enough for the surrogacy
Zoo researchers say that, if successful, the programme
could see a northern white rhino calf born within 10 to 15