Published on: November 4, 2022

Rhino horns

Rhino horns

Why in news?

The horns of rhinoceroses may have become smaller over time due to the impact of hunting, according to a recent study


  • The study used an interesting research approach—analysing artwork and photographs of the animal spanning more than five centuries.
  • The study, published in the latest edition of People and Nature by the British Ecological Society, relied on a repository of images maintained by the Netherlands-based Rhino Research Center (RRC).
  • declining horn length over time across species, is related to selective pressure of hunting, and indicating a utility for image-based approaches in understanding societal perceptions of large vertebrates and trait evolution
  • The study found that the rate of decline in horn length was highest in the critically endangered Sumatran rhino and lowest in the white rhino of Africa,

Sumatran Rhino

  • Habitation: With only five substantial populations in the wild four in Sumatra and one in Borneo,
  • IUCN status: Critically endangered

Black rhinoceros

  • Habitation : Native to eastern and southern Africa including Angola, Botswana, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Eswatini, Tanzania, Zambia, and Zimbabwe
  • IUCN status: Critically endangered

Indian rhinoceros

  • Habitation : Native to the Indian subcontinent.
  • IUCN list : Vulnerable
  • Highest population : Kaziranga National Park
  • Highest density : Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary in Assam
  • Indian rhinos once ranged across the entire northern part of the Indian Subcontinent, along the Indus, Ganges and Brahmaputra River basins, from Pakistan to the Indian-Myanmar border, including Bangladesh and the southern parts of Nepal and Bhutan.