Orphaned, rhino calf admitted to CWRC


Kaziranga (Assam): A young rhino calf found near its mother’s carcass in Kaziranga National Park in Assam last week, has been admitted to the IFAW-WTI run Centre for Wildlife Rehabilitation and Conservation (CWRC) for rehabilitation.

The six-month old male calf and its dead mother were found by the Forest Department officials in Agoratuli range of Kaziranga on December 19. The adult rhino was poached and dehorned about a week earlier.

“The dead rhino lay hidden in a wooden thicket making it difficult to locate, and the calf remained by its mother’s side. It was nervous and charged at anyone that approached its mother’s carcass,” informed Dr Arindam Kishore Pachoni, IFAW-WTI veterinarian, who assisted the Forest Department in subduing the calf and moving it to CWRC.

The calf was restrained using a net and ropes and transported to CWRC in the GAIL (India) Limited supported Mobile Veterinary Service (MVS) unit based at the centre.

“Soon after we reached CWRC, the calf was transferred to the large-animal nursery. Nearly a week without its mother to look after it had left the calf quite stressed and dehydrated. Following a few attempts, we managed to bottle-feed the calf about three litres of electrolyte,” recalled Dr Pachoni.

“The calf is stable now and along with milk, it is being given mineral supplements and some amount of concentrate food besides grasses, bamboo leaves etc. It will be hand-raised and released in the wild eventually,” said Dr Anil Deka, CWRC veterinarian.


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