Effectively extinct northern white rhino could be revived through surrogate pregnancy
This article originally featured in The Skylark’s newsletter and was written as a condensed news in brief.
In 2018, the last known male northern white rhino died in captivity, creating fears that the species was doomed to extinction. However, researchers collected sperm from previous male rhinos before their deaths and developed three embryos using eggs collected from the last two living females in 2019. They plan to implant the embryos in female southern white rhinos, which are more populous. The project is based in Kenya, where over 20,000 rhinos used to roam in the 1970’s. However, following heavy poaching, there are only 650 remaining. If a northern white rhino could be born this way, the species could be temporarily saved. The International Rhino Foundation estimates there are roughly 18,000 southern white rhinos surviving, mostly in South Africa. It puts the total number of black rhinos at about 5,500.