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            • Namibia safari by Shannon wild

            Everything you need to know about seeing black rhino on safari

            Everything you need to know about seeing black rhino on safari

            As you see a black rhino gently wandering through grasslands and quietly browsing foliage you will wonder how on earth anyone can want to poach these seemingly placid creatures.

            Found in savannahs, shrublands, grasslands and deserts, black rhinos they spend the majority of their time foraging for plants - eating up to 220 different species. During the hottest parts of the day they can be found lounging in the shade or wallowing in mud to keep cool. This is a fantastic time to see interactions between mothers and calves as the energetic little one will be vying for its mother’s attention while she is clearly trying to relax.

            Occasionally, if a rhino feels threatened they will mock charge the predator; snorting and puffing as well as scuffing the dirt below their feet in order to assert their authority. More often than not they will retract but this really is a sight to behold for any animal enthusiast.

            Experts view: Oliver Greenfield

            Seeing the mutually beneficial relationship of a large black rhino and the little red and yellow-billed oxpeckers nibbling their ticks is a tender moment and makes for some great photographs!

            Black rhino

            The black rhino

            Much smaller than its cousin - the white rhino - black rhinos can be distinguished by a number of features but surprisingly colour isn’t one of them. Both black and white rhinos have thick grey hides and one or two horns. Black rhinos, however, have a distinctive prehensile lip which acts as a beak to grasp plants and sticks. They also have a large hump on their neck/back which has developed thanks to the browsing technique used when eating foliage as opposed to the grazing behaviour of white rhinos.

            A novel way to tell the difference between black and white rhino with young is to see where the adult stands and walks in relation to their calf: black rhinos walk with their young trailing behind them whereas white rhino tend to follow their calves. This is likely to be due to the difference in habitat between the two, black rhino preferring bushes and shrubs as opposed to the open plains favoured by white rhino.

            Around 98% of the total black rhino population can be found in a small range of just four countries: South Africa, Kenya, Zimbabwe and Namibia.

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            African sunset, Botswana

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