Zoo Zone

March 29, 2000

Living dinosaurs!

With its massive size, bare skin and horns, the rhinoceros looks a lot like a dinosaur. In fact, relatives of the rhinoceros walked the earth 15,000 years ago. While the extinct rhinos varied in appearance, all were generally large. Today, several of the surviving rhino species are endangered because people kill them for their horns, which are ground up and used in medicines and to make dagger handles.

Do you know?

What are the five species of rhinoceros alive today?

Answer: Black rhinos, white rhinos, Indian rhinos, Javan rhinos and Sumatran rhinos.

What's for dinner?

The rhinoceros is a herbivore (plant eater), eating a large amount of food every day to support its great size.


True or False?

The white rhino got its name because of its color.

False! The white rhino's name comes from the Dutch word weit, meaning"wide" and refers to the animal's wide mouth, used for grazing.

Learn more!

Check out the two white rhinos at The Baltimore Zoo.

Visit your local library!

Wild facts

1. An adult rhinoceros can weigh up to four tons--as much as two large limousines.

2. The horn of a rhinoceros is made of keratin, not bone. Keratin is the same material that your fingernails are made of!

3. The rhinoceros has poor vision so it relies upon its sense of smell to find food, water and other rhinos.

-- The Baltimore Zoo, 1998

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