Alaskans for Wildlife

Last Sumatran Rhino is Malaysia Dies

The Sumatran rhinoceros is officially extinct in Malaysia after the last remaining animal in the country died this past weekend. The rhino, named Iman, had uterine tumors since her capture in March 2014, and finally succumbed to cancer at age 25. Her death comes just six months after the death of the country’s only male rhino.

Sumatran rhino with distinctive double horns.

A few years ago, wildlife officials managed to obtain egg cells from Iman, and there is a possibility of reproducing the endangered species through artificial insemination. However, attempts to breed rhinos using reproductive technology in vitro fertilization have so far been unsuccessful.

The Sumatran rhinoceros is the smallest of the rhinos, and the only rhino is two horn. The species once roamed across Asia as far as west India, but its numbers have shrunk drastically due to deforestation and poaching. It is estimated that there are only  80 left, mostly living in the wild in Sumatra and Borneo.

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