Species: Black Rhino
Born: September 2015
Two and half month old black rhino calf, Storm was found wandering alone in the bush in poor condition. It was unknown at the time whether Storm’s mother had been poached or she had abandoned him but he was tiny, rapidly weakening and needed to be rescued.
At the beginning of December 2015, Storm was transported during heavy rains and gale force winds – hence the name Storm. Rivers flooded causing Storm and his transport team to spend the night on the riverbank waiting for the flood level to drop (we had to send extra security, coffee and blankets).
From the start Storm was different, surprisingly calm and easy to feed and work with but it soon became apparent that little Storm had very serious health problems, requiring incredibly intensive and adaptive nursing. On three occasions, we came very close to losing him. A severe parasitic infestation resulted in regurgitation that resulted in aspiration pneumonia, topped with protein losing enteropathy (PLE), nausea, in-appetence, loss of weight and failure to thrive. Little Storm was too weak to undertake an emergency flight to the veterinary faculty. Four months of some of the most intense and adaptive nursing have proved worth it. Storm seemed to have turned a corner and started to gain weight, and become more active and playful. When Nandi and Storm were introduced they formed a strong bond.
Storm continues to improve in condition and is rapidly catching up with Nandi in size. Storm is currently being rehabilitated back into the wild with Nandi – both of them have been weaned off milk and moved to a larger more wild enclosure with limited human contact and an increase in browse.