Importance of Natural Resources

Home Safari – Black Rhino Seyia – Cincinnati Zoo


hello everybody welcome to Home Safari
again today my name is Marjorie Barthel and I’m Kelly Carpenter and we’re both
two of the Rhino keepers here at the zoo today we’re here with Seyia our female
Rhino and we’re gonna talk about her today with you guys and while we’re
talking also please don’t hesitate to send in those questions we’d love to
answer whatever questions you guys might have out there so this is Seyia as I said
our female black rhino and Kelly’s tossing her some treats right now some
of her favorites this is some enrichment we also use it for training with her to
teach her just basic husbandry behaviors that we can use if the vet needs to
check her out just like kids have to go to the doctor Seyia gets checked
out by our vet the same way so she’s eating some apple oat treats they’re
actually a horse treat but she really likes these so we were tossing her some
of those right now so this Rhino is she’s from Baton
Rouge so she’s a southern belle she came up to the Cincinnati Zoo about four
years ago 2013 yep 2013 yes what year is it but anyway she’s been a wonderful
animal in our collection she’s a very full of personality she’s very energetic
very sweet very sassy she always lets us know how she’s feeling for the day for
sure she’s very playful she likes to get baths often Kelly and I try to give her a
pretty regular bath involving a scrub brush an actual soap that we have just
for the Rhinos they I think they use it for the elephants as well but we
actually give her get her all sudded up with some soap and she just loves it the
attention she loves the feeling of the brush these guys love to be rubbed on
we actually have different enrichment toys on the walls that they can rub on
when they want to as well yeah so something really cool there’s actually a
lot of similarities between what Seyia does everyday and what we do everyday
now I know it’s really important that we all eat our fruits and vegetables every
day and that’s actually a really big part of Seyia’s diet so every single day
she gets romaine lettuce carrots bananas apples but it’s not just limited to that
she can have Kiwis cantaloupe melon asparagus now I would say that she
normally does like all of our fruits and vegetables but there are a few certain
ones that she is not super fond of like celery some other similarities between
us and Seyia is it’s really important that we brush our teeth and have good
dental hygiene and although Seyia doesn’t exactly brush her teeth what
you’re seeing Marge if her which is willow she actually eats the leaves and
the sticks of all the browse that she gets and those sticks kind of act like a
little toothbrush or floss for her so she takes care of her teeth we also do
operant conditioning training with her so she will open her mouth on commands
so we can check inside and make sure that she does have good looking teeth
not too much plaque she also is trained for a voluntary blood draw just like we
give blood and as you’ve seen in the past when she was pregnant with Kendi we
also did voluntary ultrasounds we do get weights on her so right now she’s
about 2600 pounds but black rhino species can get up to about 3500 our
male Faru weighs in at about 2800 they are the smaller of the African rhino
species so there’s two species of African rhinos the black rhino that we
have here Seyia and white rhinos white rhinos are the larger ones
so Luke wants to know how hard is their horn so her horn is very hard so she
uses it to protect herself to protect her calfs and also when she’s with
Faru so what’s really cool about their horns which is another similarity is her
horns are made of something called keratin and we actually have things on
us that are made of keratin as well so that’s what our fingernails and our hair
is made of and you can see she does have a beautiful horn she does shape it
herself so she’ll rub it they also use that for scent markings occasionally if
we had to we could file on her horn as well so Aiden wants to know what is her
favorite food Marge what was her favorite food so her favorite favorite
favorite food is actually strawberry jam she loves strawberries but she loves
strawberry jam the most we try to get jars of that fairly often for her and
rub it on like a ball or some of her enrichment toys in her stalls or when
she’s out here in her yard she absolutely loves it
Connor wants to know hi Connor how many babies do they have so black rhinos have
one calf at a time and normally about every four years between every three to
four years so we have had one born here his name was Kendi I’m sure you all know
him well and we are looking to breed our pair in the future yes we are we’re on
getting through winter here and probably in the in the spring here as it gets
warmer more warmer days consistently and a lot drier weather than we’ve had
for sure we’ll definitely continue to try to try
to make another baby here so that’s exciting
which I would cool about us is our logo that is on our uniforms actually the
only animal featured on it is the black rhino so we’re pretty fond of them Piper
wants to know does she have a faith keeper I am upset about this question
because she does she’s a that would be me that would be Marge you know what I I
greeted her when she came to our zoo she was just a young little thing and we
just bonded pretty quickly and to this day she she won’t shift very well at
least when I’m in the building the other keepers will kind of Marge get out of
the building she doesn’t want to shift because she knows I’m in there so it’s a
special relationship I have with her but she does love all of us though for sure
I’m just a I’m the second favorite just to make myself feel good yeah so she can
be really she’ll get really excited and fixated on Marge if Marge and I are in
the building together so I’ll have to tell Marge like you need to go out of
sight cuz she won’t move over and she’s looking at you so tre wants to know is
there skin soft it is out of some places you know behind her ears particularly
are very soft their noses are pretty soft under their eyes and the creases
are really soft and those are all places they love to be rubbed as well too so
but you know it’s it’s rough skin but in some spots like I said it’s you know a
little more soft than others so Meredith hi Meredith wants to know why does she
have hair on her ears well she’s a mammal though she
they only typically have hair black rhinos in a couple places her eyelashes
her ears a tips of her tail I think it adds some attitude to her like her own type of style so we also asked what the difference is
between a black and a white rhino so I said earlier that white rhinos are
larger they’re both African species of rhino and it sounds like they’re called
black and white Rhino would relate to their color at all but it actually does
it most of the time they’re gray right after or Seyia has one of her beautiful
baths she can be a little bit darker colored to her but they’re the main
difference is her lip so while she’s reaching for these treats you can kind
of see on her upper lip she has a semi prehensile lip so black rhinos are
browsers that means that they’re going to reach into the sky they’re gonna grab
leaves and berries shrubs branches with that upper lip whereas white rhinos have
a square bottom lip because they are grazers so white rhinos are really great
at eating off the ground almost like having a giant shovel attached to your
mouth Chris would like to know how big is a
baby rhino when it’s born first of all they are so cute and ours was about
about 80 pounds or so yeah eighty hundred pounds so compared to her
they’re really teeny tiny and that was definitely so far one of the biggest
highlights of my career and I think Kelly’s as well yeah we actually
Cincinnati Zoo has been very successfully breeding black rhinos it
had been a while since we had one so Kendi was a really special gift and we’re
looking forward to more in the future but something really cool about black
rhino calves is Kendi was born about 80 pounds at Birth huge and he gained a
hundred pounds every single month of his life for the first year of his life so
one month old 180 pounds two months old 280 pounds
and then about a year old that does slow down a little bit but if you got to see
him in the yard he every time you went to go look at him he was just getting
bigger and bigger Sophia wants to know how long are rhinos pregnant for so they
are pregnant for 15 months I can’t if I remember the days she was yeah but 15
months or so these guys are pregnant so a very long time but obviously it’s well
worth the wait but yes it’s a long gestation period so long process yeah
and towards the end of her last pregnancy was when we were able to do
the voluntary ultrasounds with our CREW Department here which was really cool in
the beginning not much to see but towards the end yeah absolutely
so we had another question are any of their senses better than the other and
yes they are so Seyia does not have the best vision if something was about 30
metres away from her so if Marge was standing 30 metres away from her she
wouldn’t be able to really distinguish what that is or who that is or if it’s a
small tree or a human but she makes up up for it in other ways so she has a
great sense of hearing and a great sense of smell hi Hannah wants to know can Seyia
swim so these guys aren’t really aquatic animals they’re just not made to
really swim per se not that you wouldn’t find them in the water you’ll more than
likely see an Indian Rhino in the water but we’ve have had black rhinos that
like to go down and their pools in the summer when it’s been really hot but
what these guys really love is the mud these guys would rather mud wallow all
day long so just like those kids at home that like to get the dirt in the mud
these guys do too but they do it with a purpose not only to keep cool when it’s
really hot and sunny and sticky especially humid in Cincinnati here but
also to protect their skin insect bites so they’re protecting
themselves from flies and things like that as well it also helps to condition
their skin really – so Collin wants to know are they
endangered so they are actually listed as critically endangered there are about
5,000 black rhinos left and 60 black rhinos in AZA zoos across the United
States around before 1970 there was about 65,000 rhinos and from 1970 to the
early 1990s the population decreased by 96% percent bringing them down to about
2,500 obviously we’ve been able to double that population but you’re a
support of our zoo is participating in their conservation which is really
important because I think Seyia is pretty cute we want to keep black rhinos around
Jake asked do they shed horns no they do not shed horns they keep growing those
horns throughout their lifetime I think Kelly mentioned before that they
shaped them themselves which they do but yes those horns can grow several feet
long you know especially in the in the wild
but yeah I mean these guys have these same horns their whole life a fun
activity after this is actually to Google the difference between horns and
antlers yes it is I think it would answer that
question as well so Maddie wants to know are they born
with horns so they are not born with horns it’s
pretty cute when they are first born you can see where the first horn will be the
first one the front one is the first one that will grow in you’ll it’ll just
start as a little bump and very quickly actually you know start forming into
horn soon after that I want to say a couple weeks after that the second horn
behind the first one will start to pop through as well
so no they do not have a horn when they’re first born but it does not take
long before they’re growing in and something really cool is their horns
actually grow their entire lives so they constantly shape them but if she had to
you know shaped it off a little bit it continues to grow their whole lives so
we had a question on what is the life expectancy of a black rhino
so in our zoo they typically live between 35 to 45 years in the wild about
30 to 35 Avery would like to know how can kids help rhinos and that is such a
special question by you watching this Home Safari today you are helping rhinos
you just coming to the Cincinnati Zoo supporting your local zoo just even
loving these animals is how you can help Seyia and black rhinos and their
conservation we also have something really fun that Marge does which is
called Rhino Rembrandt’s do you want to talk about Rhino Rembrandt yeah so what
Rhino Rembrandt’s is is it’s actually paintings done that the keepers that we
sell online on Cincinnati Zoo org that are rhinos paint themselves they use
that prehensile lip that Kelly was talking about earlier we put some paint
on a canvas colors of people’s choice and these guys just paint away it’s fun
for us it’s fun for them it’s a type of enrichment and off it also obviously is
you know putting money toward rhino conservation as well as supporting the
zoo so we had a not question about rhinos
but an important question from Brittany how do you become a zookeeper so I would
say the most important thing is you gotta love animals we work them with
them every single day and being passionate about animals is really
really important but studying really really hard in school a lot of zoos
require a bachelor degree and then even volunteering so at our zoo which in time
we will be open again you can be a volunteer even under the age of 18 you
can do internships there are zoos in every state so there’s so many
opportunities to kind of get experience in the field Natalie ask do they get dry skin yes
they do get dry skin so we talked a little bit about their mud wallowing and
how that can help condition their skin in the warm months but actually through
the winter time like now when Kelly and I give her her scrubby bath we will also
use skin so soft on her as well it’s diluted a little bit with just a little
bit of water but we use skin so soft we spray it on her skin to help keep it
nice and conditioned for the winter so we’re gonna answer two more questions
and then we’re gonna talk to you about your awesome activity for today so Hanna
wants to know what other animals do they get along with there’s two of us um so
these guys are solitary you’ll usually just see black rhinos by themselves
unless of course they come together for breeding or they have a you will
also see them with in the wild especially with little birds on their
back and don’t ask me the name of them all look oxpeckers thank you
those the little birds little oxpeckers help to keep the insects you know off
their back they’ll actually eat them off their back for them
we don’t really house currently our black rhinos with anything else here
they seem to get along with ducks yeah that we found in the yard before it’s
smaller birds not a whole lot of you know yeah I think they like their space
yes they do for sure being solitary there’s no
usually round them in the wild anyway in our last question from Tatum how many
pounds of food do they eat a day so she gets 14 pounds of grain alone and as we
talked earlier she does get the lettuce carrots apples bananas variety of fruits
and vegetables and then she eats about a bale and a half a hay of hay a day she’s got to maintain her figure so
before we leave you we do want to end with talking about our activity for
today and it’s a really cool activity because it’s gonna help you remember
that there are five species of Rhino so we’re gonna count them out with you
first so we have our black rhino like saya behind us white rhino the greater
one horned rhino which we have here as well Sumatran rhino and Javan rhinos
and you are going to use this handprint and turn it into your very own Rhino so
log on to the Cincinnati Zoo’s website and look at the Home Safari resources and be
sure when you make it up to send us pictures
name your Rhino make sure that they have two horns like a black rhino does we’re
so excited to see you we are very excited yeah thank you thank you guys


Reader Comments

  1. Get to enjoy watching the show on t.v. But being able to watch the videos on youtube and learn more is a bonus. Thank You from Alberta, Canada

  2. She looks too thin? Are her ribs showing? Maybe Fiona could share some of
    Her treats with her ? Such wonderful gifts from GOD!

  3. the world needs more stuff like this..more please..ty so much for ur service to the animals n humans.please stay safe.

  4. I noticed that Seyia the Rhino has no grass around her. I am sure they eat lots of greenery, bushes and all sort of other growing plants. and they are basically plant-eaters. How long do they live?

  5. Great informational and interesting video on the black rhino. Love the baby Rhinos too…when i see them on Utube. Thanks so much here in virus torn Los Angeles..

  6. i love the animals but the keepers for john are not nice to me at all an im there to support them even bought the bracelet n necklace so its donated to help them. its a nice thing to be close to them

  7. Can you please continue to do these even after the zoo is open? Many of us will never be able to go to Cincinnati but we love seeing these animals!

  8. Thanks you so much for these educational videos. I’ve been able to watch them all with my 3 year old nephew who’s loving it.

  9. She is so cute rhino,like a little puppy!! And also such a great mother too!
    Keep up the great work guys!!
    cannot wait to see the new habitat
    Roo Valley Eee!!!

  10. Thank you! Loving these educational sites at Cincinnati zoo. Have seen Fiona and Seyia. It is so interesting , love the facts you are sharing! Stay well and thanks for your work!

  11. My daughter would like to know how can you tell when the rhino is pregnant? (Thanks so much for these we are watching them from Australia as part of our new homeschooling)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *