Difference between BLACK RHINO (Diceros bicornis) and WHITE RHINO (Ceratotherium simum) given that they are both gray ©Art Wolfe
There is no colour difference between the two rhinos. The Dutch people named the grass-eating white rhino the “Weid mond rhino”, meaning “Wide-mouth rhino.” The English thought they were saying “white”, so it was all just a misinterpretation of the name. The black rhino has a hooked shaped mouth for feeding on trees. [shown]
Even though the white rhino is less aggressive, there are still more incidents of them attacking people as they have a higher population and thus regular encounters with people.Other differences:
Black Rhino (Hooked-lip Rhino)
- Smaller than the white rhino. A large bull weighs around 1000 kg/2,200 lbs.
- They have a rather small hooked shaped mouth for feeding on trees and shrubs.
- The black rhinos’ natural head posture is face upward, so there is no need for it to lift its’ head when feeding off trees.
- Black rhino are often found in thick vegetation which is possibly the reason why the female will often run in front of her calf to clear a pathway.
- The black rhino is short tempered and extremely aggressive.
- They are very solitary and seldom join up with other individuals.
White Rhino (Broad-mouthed Rhino)
- Larger than black rhino. Large bulls reaching weights of 2500 kg./5,500 lbs.
- They have a very broad flat mouth which aids in feeding off large quantities of grass.
- A white rhinos’ natural head posture faces downward as its’ mouth is always close to the ground while grazing.
- They have a very distinct hump above the shoulders as well as a very prominent fold of skin at the lower parts of the shoulders.
- Being a very social animals it is not uncommon to see 10 or 15 white rhinos moving together and sometime more.
- White rhino are normally found in very open areas such as plains.
- The calf normally runs in front of its mother, with the mother using her horn to direct the calf by tapping it on the rear.
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