Nola, one of the world’s last four remaining northern white rhinoceros, has died at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, pushing the subspecies further towards extinction.
Nola, who had lived at the San Diego zoo since 1989, died on Sunday at the age of 41. She was euthanized after suffering a bacterial infection, as well as other age-related health issues, that had worsened her health over the weekend.
“In the last 24 hours, Nola’s condition worsened and we made the difficult decision to euthanize her,” the safari park said in a statement. “We’re absolutely devastated by this loss, but resolved to fight even harder to #EndExtinction.”
The northern white rhinoceros is one of the most endangered rhino species. The number of rhinos is down to only 29,000 from 500,000 at the beginning of the 20th century, according to the charity Save the Rhino. The downward figure is driven largely by demand from Asia, where ground-up rhino horns are used for medicine markets.
The northern white rhinoceros is a subspecies of the more common white rhinoceros. The only three remaining northern white rhinoceros, two females and a male, live at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya.
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