A white rhinocerous

White rhinoceros

White rhinos are named after a corruption of their Afrikaans name 'weit' (meaning wide), describing their jaw rather than their colour. They have two horns on their head, the front one being the larger. Their wide, flat mouths are adapted for grazing: they don't have incisor teeth, but use their lips instead to tear off mouthfuls of grass.

Scientific name: Ceratotherium simum

Rank: Species

Common names:

Square-lipped rhinoceros

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Map showing the distribution of the White rhinoceros taxa

Species range provided by WWF's Wildfinder.

The White rhinoceros can be found in a number of locations including: Africa. Find out more about these places and what else lives there.


The following habitats are found across the White rhinoceros distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.


Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.

Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web

Conservation Status

Near Threatened

  1. EX - Extinct
  2. EW
  3. CR - Threatened
  4. EN - Threatened
  5. VU - Threatened
  6. NT
  7. LC - Least concern

Population trend: Increasing

Year assessed: 2008

Classified by: IUCN 3.1

BBC News about White rhinoceros

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