July 5 update: Moyo will be offered daily access to the public habitat in River's Edge, in addition to the behind-the-scenes habitat, during Zoo hours. We will not be able to guarantee public viewing, as there is no set schedule. Please be patient and understand that Moyo is exploring his new habitat at his own pace. We care very much about making sure Moyo and Kati Rain are comfortable in their habitat, so they are given the choice to stay in or go out. We might have a reliable schedule for their outside appearances later this summer. Consider it a bonus if you're here and you sneak a peek! See updates on the Moyo page.

See the video at 1 week old:


Saint Louis Zoo 314/781-0900
Billy Brennan, 314/646-4633 brennan@stlzoo.org
Christy Childs, 314/646-4639 childs@stlzoo.org
Mike De Pope, 314/646-4703 depope@stlzoo.org

A male black rhinoceros calf was born at the Saint Louis Zoo on May 17, 2017. Moyo (pronounced MOY-oh), which means "heart" in Swahili, is the second offspring for mother Kati Rain (pronounced Katie Rain) and father Ajabu (pronounced ah-JAH-boo). The little male is nursing well and being cared for by his mother, according to the Zoo's rhino care team. The pair is bonding in their barn behind the scenes in River's Edge. A date has not yet been set for their public debut.

This is the second black rhino to be born at the Zoo in 26 years and only the tenth in Saint Louis Zoo history. A male calf named Ruka was born to the same parents in 2011. At age 4, Ruka moved to the Oregon Zoo in summer 2015 to pair with a compatible female there, as recommended by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) Black Rhino Species Survival Plan® (SSP).

Kati Rain and Ajabu arrived at the Zoo's River's Edge in 2007. Kati Rain is from Sedgwick County Zoo, and Ajabu from San Diego Zoo Safari Park. Both are 13 years old.

Critically Endangered

The critically endangered black rhino has experienced the most drastic decline of any of the five surviving rhino species. Between 1970 and 1992, the black rhino population in Africa dropped by 96 percent. By 1993, only 2,300 individuals survived in the wild.

Black rhinos are being pushed to the brink of extinction by illegal poaching for their horns, and to a lesser extent by loss of habitat. The horn is falsely believed to be medicine in many Asian cultures. Because of conservationists' intensive anti-poaching efforts in the 1990s and 2000s, the number of black rhinos in the wild began increasing slowly. However, a resurgence of poaching in recent years is again posing a significant threat to wild rhino populations. Current estimates show 5,055 individual black rhinos are alive in the wild.

Zoo's Are Helping

The Saint Louis Zoo's black rhinos are part of the AZA Black Rhino SSP, a program to manage a genetically healthy population of black rhinos in North American zoos. With the addition of Moyo, there are currently 60 Eastern black rhinos in 26 AZA institutions.

The Saint Louis Zoo's WildCare Institute Center for Conservation in the Horn of Africa supports the Sera Rhino Sanctuary in northern Kenya in partnership with the Northern Rangelands Trust. Additionally, the Zoo's WildCare Institute supports the Stop Poaching Now program through the International Rhino Foundation.

On the Web

Photos and more information can be found at stlzoo.org, and on the Zoo's social media sites facebook.com/stlzoo, twitter.com/stlzoo, instagram.com/stlzoo, youtube.com/stlzootube.

About the Saint Louis Zoo

Chosen as America's top free attraction and best zoo in USA Today 10Best Readers' Choice Awards, the Saint Louis Zoo is widely recognized for its innovative approaches to animal care and management, wildlife conservation, research and education. One of the few free zoos in the nation, the Zoo attracts more than 3,000,000 visitors a year.