Researchers and conservationists alike are currently searching for a member of the larger species of Black Rhino, which is reported to be hiding deep in the thickest of woodland within the vast Nyerere National Park.
Yes. Where it was once believed that there were no Rhinos, rare sightings of the lone mammal are being reported. However in the latest development, the Government of Tanzania, thought its Natural Resources Ministry has thrashed reports.
The rather shy female south-central black rhinoceros (Diceros Bicornis Minor) usually appears unannounced in parts of the large National Park, before disappearing again, with the first sighting recorded in the year 2017.
The ferocious ungulate could be the only one of its kind in East Africa, as of yet. As far as wildlife experts are concerned.
According to the Technical Advisor for Wildlife and Natural resources protection Dr Asantael Williams Melita, the rare black rhino also has a calf.
“Compared to other Black Rhino species found in the Northern areas such, Mkomazi, Serengeti or Ngorongoro, this one in Nyerere National Park is larger in size and endemic to the Southern Zone,” explained Dr Asantael Melita.
The Wildlife Technical Advisor explained further that, while the well-known black Rhino Species are zoologically known as Diceros Bicornis Michael, the rare species hiding in the Nyerere National Park within the Selous eco-system is of Diceros Bicornis Minor sub-species.
Also known as south-central hook-lipped rhinoceros, this subspecies of the Black Rhinoceroses is probably the only one of its kind recorded in East Africa, yet.
Researchers and conservators in the Southern Circuit are therefore trying to locate the rare rhino, or its frequented habitat believing that there could be even more of the kind where it comes from.
Occupying an area of nearly 31,000 square kilometers, the Nyerere National Park is so far the largest in both the country and East Africa and when added into the Selous Eco-system it becomes the largest reserve on the African Continent at more than 50,000 square kilometers.
Amply catered when it comes to free ranging area, the sheer size of unspoiled reserve simply means that if a Rhino or any other wildlife species chooses to get lost in the vast woodland, it may take eternity to find it.
Aged three years after being annexed from the Selous Game Reserve, Nyerere currently attracts more than 100,000 foreign visitors and generates nearly 3.5 billion/- in revenues, according to the Acting Commissioner of Conservation at the National Park, Dr Emilian Samuel Kihwele.
Many of the visitors enjoy networking their travel itineraries between beach tourism in Unguja, Pemba and wildlife spotting in Nyerere National Park and most happen to be those from Italy, Russia and Poland.
Follow up Story: Ministry refutes presence of the Female Rhino in Park