White Rhino zoo

Next year's internet sensation was just born at the Toronto Zoo

Congratulations to first-time mother Zohari on the birth of her newest family member – a healthy, hairy, approximately 140 pound baby boy (or male calf, if we're being technical).

The Toronto Zoo has just announced the arrival of arrival of its first newborn white rhinocerous in nearly 30 years.

Born on Christmas Eve at 10:45 p.m., the male calf is said to be very big and strong, with hairy ears and a ferocious appetite. 

"Both mom and baby are doing very well," wrote the Zoo on Facebook Thursday morning, nothing that the calf "has been eating more than would be expected."

This marks the fifth ever birth of a white rhino in Toronto history, and the first since 1990.

"This recent birth is very important for white rhinoceros conservation," reads The Toronto Zoo's birth announcement. "There are approximately only 19,682 – 21,077 left in the wild according to the IUCN African Rhino Specialist Group 2016."

White rhinos are listed as "near threatened" on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List of Threatened Species.

As part of the White Rhinoceros Species Survival Plan, The Toronto Zoo is working to help establish and maintain healthy, genetically diverse white rhino populations so that the species can be conserved.

The new baby calf, who was fathered by a 10-year-old male named Tom, is a part of the zoo's conservation efforts.

Fortunately for Toronto, he's also a very cute addition to the city. 

Neither Zohari nor her calf, who has yet to be named, are visible to the public at this time – but if history is any indication, we'll see a lot more of this little guy on the zoo's Twitter and Facebook accounts in coming months.

Lead photo by

Toronto Zoo


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