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Jonathan W
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habitat loss Who gives a hoot about habitat?
"Who gives a hoot about habitat?"

Everybody knows how little habitat is left for Rhinos. And everybody knows why, too.

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Rhino Composite Population Graph

rhino comp gr

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Information on the rhinoceros from USFWS, 1998:
"Prehistoric rhinoceroses, some larger than elephants, some the size of wolves, were found on every continent except South America and Australia. Today, there are five species of rhino: two African species and three Asian. The African species are the white, or square-lipped, and the black rhinos. Both species have two horns. Of the Asian species, the Indian and the Javan each have a single horn, while the Sumatran rhino has two."

African Rhino
Hemera Photo Object, African Rhino

Information on African rhinoceros from USFWS, 1998:

"White or Square-lipped rhinoceros, (Ceratotherium simum) There are two subspecies of the white rhino -- the northern white rhino, which is nearly extinct, and the southern white rhino, which is the most common of all rhinos. The white rhino is actually gray. Its name probably stems from the mistranslation of the Dutch word for "wide" describing its upper lip. It lives on the open plains of Africa. The largest of the rhinos, it stands more than 6 feet tall and weighs 6,000 to 8,000 pounds. It also has the longest horn, averaging 18 inches to 4 feet."

"Black rhinoceros, (Diceros bicornis) The black rhino also lives in Africa, but in a variety of habitats from the dense rainforests to the dry scrublands. Once numerous in eastern and southern Africa, it is now only found in national parks and game reserves. The black rhino stands more than 5 l/2 feet tall and weighs up to 4,000 pounds. Its front horn averages 18 inches to 4 feet."

Hemera Photo Object, Asian Rhino

Information on Asian rhinoceros from USFWS:

"Indian rhinoceros, (Rhinoceros unicornis) The Indian rhino weighs the same as the black rhino -- about 4,000 pounds -- but stands about 6 feet tall. This rhino was once found throughout most of India, particularly in lush river valleys. Today, it survives only on eight reserves in India and Nepal. Living in swampy areas, it eats marsh grasses and aquatic plants."

"Sumatran rhinoceros, (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) The Sumatran rhino is the only Asian rhino species with two horns and the only rhino with hair on its body. The front horn averages 15 to 20 inches and the second may be hardly noticeable. It stands about 4 l/2 feet tall and weighs 750 to 2,000 pounds. There are a few Sumatran rhinos left in Burma, Malaysia, Thailand, and Sumatra. They live in dense forests and feed on plants at the forest edges and in mountain clearings."

"Javan rhinoceros, (Rhinoceros sondaicus) Like the Sumatran, the Javan rhino also lives in dense forests, feeding at forest edges and mountain clearings on bamboo, fruit, and other plants. There are fewer than 100 Javan rhinos on a game reserve in western Java, and many believe they are extinct in the wild. Javan rhinos weigh up to 3,000 pounds and measure 4 l/2 to 5 l/2 feet tall."


This little graph shows the increase in human numbers in the last few thousand years. In this case, the distance from 1,000 million to 7,600 million is 7.6 times the distance from zero to 1,000 million. 7.6 billion is demographers' mid projection. Graph curve is from Learning Tools, KQED TV, San Francisco, a PBS educational tv station. Overpopulation denialists right and left have asked about the source, so now you know. The leader of the Task Force on Amphibian Decline living in Britain objected calling the graph extreme and, "off the scale." But it isn't. It is simply demographer's mid projection.

Usually when such a graph is drawn, a short time scale is used. But an evolutionarily significant time scale can more easily show relevant amounts of increase per unit of time.

The distance from 1,000 million to 7,600 million is 7.6 times the distance from zero to 1,000 million. The graph is an accurate representation.

KQED, a PBS program available on video tape to eligible schools and non-profit groups. 60 minutes. To Order: Call Films for the Humanities, 1.800.257.5126

world pop

Hemera Photo-Object stock photo.

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Food, Energy, Society
Food, Energy, Society



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