ASHEBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — The North Carolina Zoo announced the death of Natalie, a southern white rhinoceros who was euthanized on Jan. 10 after her health declined.
Zookeepers said Natalie, 30, had a personality that matched her over two-ton size. Southern white rhinos are the second-largest land mammal after elephants.
The veterinarian and animal care teams had been treating Natalie for chronic kidney failure, anemia and multisystemic disease for the past several months.
“Unfortunately, her health was in a steep decline despite treatment efforts, which led to a decrease in quality of life,” said Associate Veterinarian for the North Carolina Zoo Dr. Tim Georoff. “This week, the animal care and vet teams made the difficult decision to euthanize Natalie when treatment efforts were no longer effective.”
Natalie arrived at the North Carolina Zoo with her son Lyonnel in 2007.
She had previously lived most of her life at White Oak Conservation Center in Florida where she gave birth to two males named Tony and Dominique.
All three of her offspring are still living at other accredited zoos in North America.
Southern white rhinos are the most social of the rhino species and live together in groupings called “crashes.”
Rhinos in the wild live into their early 30s and can live into their early 40s under human care.
The North Carolina Zoo now has a rhino crash of seven females: Linda, Kit, Abby, Nandi, Bonnie, Jojo and Mguu.