Lulu, Eastern Black Rhinoceros

October 19, 2023

Lincoln Park Zoo is happy to announce that there’s a new addition at Regenstein African Journey: a female eastern black rhino named Lulu. She has been transferred here in an effort to support the Eastern Black Rhinoceros Species Survival Plan®, which cooperatively manages Associations of Zoos and Aquariums populations.

Five-year-old Lulu arrived on October 3 and is acclimating to her new space. She entered her outdoor habitat for the first time on Tuesday. Keepers report that she has been cautious but interactive with her care team and the new environment.

Lulu joins two other resident adult rhinos, 18-year-old Kapuki and 19-year-old male Utenzi. She is smaller in stature than former resident Romeo, who was born here in 2019, but can be distinguished by her much sharper horn.

Lincoln Park Zoo has made successfully caring for black rhinos a priority, as they are part of a critically endangered species. In fact, zoo researchers pioneered a hormone-monitoring technique that led to two important calf births in 2013 (King) and 2019 (Romeo), who now both reside at other AZA zoos.

Black rhino populations experience habitat loss in their native range in Kenya and Tanzania, but individuals are also poached for their horns. Some traditional medicine practitioners believe the horns to have healing properties, but they are formed from keratin—the same material that makes up human hair and nails.

Lulu can be viewed intermittently in her habitat on the north side of the zoo as she continues to adjust to her new home. Come by and see her!

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