Busch Gardens Tampa Bay welcomed a baby white rhinoceros on Tuesday. The female rhino was born at the 26-acre white rhino habitat on the park's Serengeti Plain.
The baby is the second calf born to mother Kisiri and the seventh calf born to father Tambo. Busch Gardens has celebrated a total of seven white rhino births since October 2004. The new baby weighed about 140 pounds. The newborn – who has yet to be named – will gain about four pounds each day until it reaches an adult weight of 3,500 to 4,000 pounds.
Busch Gardens participates in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums species survival plan to ensure genetic diversification among threatened and endangered animals in zoological facilities. The birth brings the total white and black rhino population at the park to eight.
Kisiri, Tambo and another female white rhino were airlifted from Kruger National Park in South Africa in 2001 through the efforts of the International Rhino Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the protect rhinos. Fewer than 15,000 white rhinos remain in the wild, and approximately 200 live in zoological facilities across North America.