The Rhino is a homely beast, For human eyes he’s not a feast, But you and I will never know Why Nature chose to make him so. Farewell, farewell, you old rhinoceros, I’ll stare at something less prepoceros.
Rather nasty that! But it was amazing to see this large beast at Kaziranga National Park. Kaziranga, a World Heritage Site, is home to the world’s largest population of the greater one-horned rhinoceroses- almost 2000 of them.
Indian rhinos are excellent swimmers. The folds in their skin trap water and hold it even when they come back on land.
The scientific name Rhinoceros unicornis comes from the Greek: ‘rhino’, meaning nose and ‘keros’ means horn of an animal. The Latin ‘uni’ of course means single and ‘cornis’ means horn. But just look at the armour-like hide!
Sadly, poachers abound here in Kaziranga and keeping them in check is a huge problem. They are hunted for their horn which is incidentally made up of keratin. The horn is used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat fever, rheumatism and gout. But more these days as a status symbol. Terrible state of affairs.