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Asian rhinos species:

Critically endangered (Around 63 remain) Rhinoceros sondaicus

Affected by: Habitat loss and fragmentation , Illegal wildlife trade

Critically endangered (Around remain) Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

Affected by: Habitat loss and fragmentation , Illegal wildlife trade

Vulnerable (Around 3555 remain) Rhinoceros unicornis

Affected by: Habitat loss and fragmentation , Illegal wildlife trade

Asian rhinos have an even more armoured look than their African counterparts, thanks to all those folds in their skin. They’re vegetarians, grazing on tall grasses, shrubs, leaves and fruits – restructuring the landscape as they go.

They look pretty tough but Asian rhinos need a lot of protection right now. The greater one-horned is slowly recovering thanks to years of successful conservation effort, but they’re all at risk from the rising threat of poaching and loss of habitat.

Sumatran rhinos, for example, have been reduced by at least 70% since 1990 – there are less than 100 left in the wild. Vietnam’s last Javan rhinos became extinct in 2010.

We’re helping Asian rhinos in several ways, including supporting national park and community-based rhino protection and patrol units, improving rhino monitoring and raising conservation awareness. We’re also involved in national programmes to create new rhino populations by relocating some animals where needed.

And we help people living near rhino areas to increase their income through activities like ecotourism, which won’t threaten the rhinos.

Join us and help keep all rhinos safe.

Where Asian rhinos live

The greater one-horned rhino once roamed across most of Asia, but now it’s found mainly in India and Nepal, and is returning to Bhutan. The last remaining population of Javan rhinos are now only found in one protected area, Ujung Kulon National Park on the island of Java. Sumatran rhinos are found in Sumatra, with a few individuals remaining in Kalimantan, Indonesia. 

Asian rhinos love being near or in water – they’re actually very good swimmers.

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Why Asian rhinos are so important

Rhinos have been around for millions of years and play a crucial role in their environment. Being big-bodied vegetarians, they eat a lot of plants every day to meet their energy needs. So they are true landscape engineers.

For example, the greater one-horned rhino helps to keep the grasslands near rivers closely-cropped, which makes those areas attractive to smaller herbivores too. They also help disperse seeds in their poo, which help plants and trees spread.

By protecting the rhino we’re also helping other wildlife and people who depend on the health of that environment.

Adopt a rhino