Sumatran Rhinoceros

Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

The Sumatran rhinoceros is not your ordinary rhino. Forest-dwelling with woolly red hair and quite petite (for a rhino), the Sumatran rhino uses its prehensile upper lip to browse on vegetation. It is also the world’s most endangered rhino, suffering from deforestation and poaching for its horn, which some Asian cultures believe has medicinal properties.

More info

Conservation efforts are critical to the survival of the species.

  • The Sumatran rhino has two horns, which are made of tightly packed hair-like fibers.
  • Rhino ears are large and cup-shaped to funnel sound, and rotate in different directions to help pinpoint the source.
  • The rhino’s sense of smell is so important that its nose takes up more space than its brain.
  • Since rhinos can’t sweat, they wallow in mud to cool down. Mud also protects the rhino from biting insects and keeps the skin healthy and smooth (well, smooth for a rhino anyway).

The last Sumatran rhino in the Western Hemipshere, Eight-year-old male Harapan, moved to Indonesia in the fall of 2015. His departure marks the end of an era for the Cincinnati Zoo’s Sumatran rhino breeding program, the only captive breeding program in the United States to produce calves for this critically-endangered species. Read more.

Fact File

Species @ Risk Image
Species Survival Plan Image
heightHeight: Up to 10 ft
weightWeight: 1,300 to 1,800 lbs
lifespanLifespan: Up to 35 yrs in wild
habitatHabitat: Tropical rainforest and mountain moss forest
dietDiet: Fruit, leaves, twigs, branches and bark
exclamationRisk Status: Species at Risk (IUCN—Critically endangered )