Meeting Baby Rhino Ethan
Jeta’s calf was given the name Ethan. I visited Ethan and his mom this past weekend, when we filmed a live segment for the Today show. I was joined by our Public Relations manager Tiffany Barnes who set up and organized the Today show filming in conjunction with the Montgomery Zoo. The day we arrived, Ethan turned 2 weeks old and the Montgomery Zoo staff had just gotten the first weight on him. Ethan weighed in at 181 lbs, confirming this little guy has not missed a single meal!
While special circumstances may have surrounded Ethan’s birth, he is acting like any other rhino calf. Mom Jeta is teaching him everything he needs to know about being and behaving like an Indian rhino- she is amazing! She uses her nose and head to guide him where she wants him to be. I love this picture taken of him during the Today show filming, here he is giving a look very typical of Indian rhinos, standing with his head held high and boldly looking on at what we were doing.
Ethan’s birth represents an important and new step in managing captive Indian rhinos. By producing offspring from non- or under-represented individuals, CREW is helping to ensure a genetically healthy captive population of Indian rhinos exists in the future. Most importantly, this calf signifies how collaboration among the zoo community can achieve great things for the animals in their care. We anticipate future AI attempts will build upon this novel approach to help not only our zoo, but other zoos produce baby Indian rhinos.