Diceros – Black rhinoceros

With 3 out of 8 subspecies have been declared extinct, illegal poaching puts these hooked upper lip rhinos in danger

Black rhinoceros are not black but grey. Although they are quite similar to their white counterparts, black rhinos are comparatively aggressive and have a characteristic pointed lip. Their population saw a sharp decline around the turn of the 20th century, from over 100,000 bottoming out to barely 2,300 (by 1993).

Increased protection and improved biological management have increased the overall population of black rhinos to around 5,000 by 2020. More than 98% of the black rhino’s historic range is now lost. Due to habitat degradation and fragmentation, 69% of their mitochondrial genetic variation has vanished.

After the West African black rhino was declared extinct in 2011, three subspecies survived. Poaching still looms as the greatest threat.