Saving the White Rhino | Sense Africa

Jenny's Blog

Saving the White Rhino3rd March '20

White rhino

A third viable northern white rhino embryo was created in December 2019 in a joint mission between Kenyan Government and scientists. The only two female northern white rhino left in the world, 31-year-old Najin and her 20-year-old daughter Fatu, had nine oocytes harvested (immature eggs cells) from their ovaries. These oocytes were rushed to Avantea Laboratory in Italy where they attempted to fertilise them using Intra Cytoplasm Sperm Injection (ICSI). The procedure was successful on one of Fatu’s eggs and the resulting embryo was incubated before placed in liquid nitrogen with the previous two embryos created in the same manner.

The team hopes to artificially inseminate a surrogate southern white rhino female and if successful, it would mean the first northern white rhino born into the wild in decades.

The project is all part of the “BioRescue” research, a consortium comprising of institutions from Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, Kenya, Japan and the USA, with a comprehensive ethical assessment from the University of Padova.White rhino

But is this the right thing to do?

Sense Africa provides bespoke self-drive, privately guided, or group guided tours which provide opportunities to see rhinos up close and personal. Contact us to discuss the options available.

Jenny Bowen,
Director and Founder of Sense Africa

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