- Species: White Rhino
- Gender: Male
- Born: October 2017
On the 4th October a little rhino calf was found with his mother and it was clear that he was very dehydrated and malnourished. At a closer look it was discovered that his mother had a tumour on her udder and therefore wasn’t able to feed him.
Without milk his chances of survival were incredibly low and so the decision was made to bring him through to the Zululand Rhino Orphanage to give him a chance at survival. While walking up to the calf it bravely staggered up to us and inquisitively sniffed and head-butted our shins but showed no signs of fear.
There was an instant connection and we were therefore able to transport him without drugs, a blindfold or earplugs on the back of a cruiser straight to the facility. Once at the facility the calf immediately bonded with the carers and started drinking milk.
Due to him never having had any milk from his mother, he never received any colostrum and so we had to arrange for a rhino plasma transfusion to be done, possibly the first of its kind! His strength returned and he was doing really well but still needed to be isolated and watched over very carefully until he started to produce his own antibodies. He showed a miraculous recovery and grew from strength to strength each day.
We decided to name him Khula which means grow in Zulu. This seemed relevant as we were growing as an orphanage at that stage and we wanted to see little Khula grow up into a big and strong adult rhino – which he certainly did! Khula was released from the facility in November 2021 weighing just over a tonne. We follow up on him regularly and he has been adjusting well to his new life in the wild.