Sumatran Rhino Conservation

Once ranging from the foothills of the Himalayas, through mainland South East Asia, to the islands of Borneo and Sumatra, the Sumatran rhino is facing serious threats and is classified as Critically Endangered. Estimated at approximately 100 individuals, Sumatran rhinos are now only found in the wild in three Indonesian national parks.

Sumatran rhino

The Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary, a 250-hectares managed breeding facility, is located in Indonesia’s Way Kambas National Park (WKNP) and is home to seven individuals. These animals provide the best hope for conservation breeding and allow conservationists to learn as much as possible about the species’ pregnancy process, parturition and early development, which are extremely difficult to study in the wild.

The Sanctuary’s long-term goal is to become “the centre of excellence for Sumatran rhino conservation, increasing the rhino population and benefitting wild populations and people” while also promoting the survival of the rhino population through conservation breeding.

Sumatran rhino

Working towards ensuring the existence of a viable population of Sumatran rhinos, the sanctuary aims at becoming the global expert in Sumatran rhino breeding, veterinary medicine, applied research and education.

The sanctuary is currently working on doubling the Sumatran Rhino Sanctuary’s holding space by 2018 to increase capacity for holding and breeding Sumatran rhinos.

We also support intensive protection of surviving wild populations through Rhino Protection Unit (RPU) patrols. There are five RPUs in WKNP that protect around 35 rhinos. The goal of the Rhino Protection Unit (RPU) programme is to prevent the extinction of Sumatran rhinos and other threatened species and to protect critical habitats.


Save the Rhino

Project team

Key Facts

Only around 100 Sumatran rhinos remain
They are one of the most threatened mammal species on Earth
Threats include poaching, habitat disturbance and fragmentation and increasingly invasive plant species impacts on native forest habitats

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