Welcome to the world, baby Kamara!
The newest addition to the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines, Iowa, is a female eastern black rhinoceros calf who was born in early April and is now on display to the public.
Kamara was born on April 5 to Ayana, a nine-year-old eastern black rhino. According to the zoo, there are fewer than 1,000 individual eastern black rhinos left in the world — making Kamara’s birth even more special.
“This is a significant event – not only for Blank Park Zoo, but also for this critically endangered animal species,” Mark Vukovich, the CEO of Blank Park Zoo, said in a statement following the birth.
The baby rhino’s name was decided in a competition, and the zoo announced in a recent video that 29% of the 2,700 votes cast went to the winning name of Kamara, which means “moonlight” in Swahili.
According to WHO TV, the other names on the ballot were Kerubi (“cherub”), Malaika (“queen”), Hazina (“treasure”) and Maisha (“life”).
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Kamara was born at 112 pounds, but the International Rhino Foundation notes that black rhinos can weigh up to 3,000 pounds when fully grown.
The foundation says that, between 1970 and 1992, the wild population of the species decreased by 96 percent because the rhinos were poached for their horns.
According to the zoo’s Facebook page, Kamara and her mother were first shown in their indoor public viewing area last weekend (just in time for Mother’s Day!), and will be there from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. every day for guests to visit.