Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

Critically Endangered

Population: fewer than 1,500

There are fewer than 80 wild #Sumatran #Rhinos left in the wild, critically endangered by #poaching and #deforestation for #palmoil in #Sumatra. #Boycott the #brands destroying their home #Boycott4Wildlife

The Sumatran Rhino is the smallest rhino in the world and is also the closest living relatives to the now-extinct woolly rhinos. Their population is unstable, threatened by poaching as well as the destruction of their habitat by unsustainable palm oil production. The species inhabits tropical rainforest and montane moss forest, and occasionally occurs at forest margins and in secondary forest (Nowak 1999). Sumatran Rhinos occur mainly in hilly areas nearby water sources, and exhibits seasonal movements, moving uphill in times of lowland flooding (van Strien 1975). This shy species is dependent on salt licks, and occurs mostly in primary forest in protected areas, but wandering into secondary forests outside protected areas, especially in the dry season in search of water (van Strien 1975).

Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis
Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis. Video and image stills: Mongabay

This species is listed as Critically Endangered due to very severe past declines of greater than 80% over three generations (generation length estimated at 20 years if using average age of parents in the population); and because there is a continuing decline of at least 30% within 10 years or 90% within three generations (cause is inferred to be poaching and habitat loss due to encroachment); and because of their population size is estimated to number fewer than 250 mature individuals, with no subpopulation greater than 50 individuals, and the Sumatran Rhino is experiencing a continuing decline (the cause of the decline is inferred to be poaching, habitat fragmentation, human disturbance, and habitat loss due to encroachment). 

Types of Rhinos throughout the world
Types of Rhinos throughout the world

We estimate that the probability of extinction in 3 generations (60 years) is 90%, without successful interventions.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species

Further Information


Ellis, S. & Talukdar, B. 2020. Dicerorhinus sumatrensis. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2020: e.T6553A18493355. Downloaded on 24 January 2021.

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Published by Palm Oil Detectives

Hi, I’m Palm Oil Detective’s Editor in Chief. Palm Oil Detectives is partly a consumer website about palm oil in products and partly an online community for writers, scientists, conservationists, artists and musicians to showcase their work and express their love for endangered species. I have a strong voice for creatures great and small threatened by deforestation. With our collective power we can shift the greed of the retail and industrial agriculture sectors and through strong campaigning we can stop them cutting down forests. Be bold! Be courageous! Join the #Boycott4Wildlife and stand up for the animals with your supermarket choices

2 thoughts on “Sumatran Rhino Dicerorhinus sumatrensis

    1. Hi Adrian, thanks for reading and your comment here 🙂

      It’s nice to connect with you.

      Here’s a list of brands to boycott. I will add more over time, as there are many more I just haven’t had time as it’s only me myself and I doing this.

      Also if you want to know the research basis for the boycotts here that is – it’s based on evidence from Greenpeace, Environmental Investigations Agency, Rainforest Action Network and Chain Reaction Research, all industry watch-dogs that have called the RSPO a scam and their inaction on deforestation akin to environmental crimes.

      Liked by 1 person

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