There are two kinds of rhino in Kruger National Park – the black and the white. They are one of the big 5 most sought after animals.
The white one is the larger of the two varieties. It can be identified by its wide mouth.
The black type is a little smaller and has a hooked lip. The words “black” and “white” are misnomers as the two are practically the same colour.
The white variety is more common than the black in Kruger National Park with around 3,000 animals. The white variety was extremely endangered some years ago, but conservation efforts have been very successful in rebuilding the population.
The black variety were extinct in the park by 1945. They were reintroduced in the 1970s and 1980s. The population is now around 350, so when you see these animals, appreciate that they were nearly extinct due to poaching.
These black and white prehistoric beasts are entirely different species. It was interesting to be told by a ranger that the white variety is only territorial towards its own kind. The black variety may pass through a white one’s territory without worry! Quite incredible!
On a morning game walking trail some years ago near Lower Sabie Rest Camp, our ranger tracked down a white type from its footprints, then to its “toilet” and we eventually found the beast some distance later. It was incredible to see such a large animal while out walking in the bush, with only a small shrub as a barrier between us and it!