Dehorning is controversial, especially as it makes male rhinos vulnerable in fights. But they are not essential for survival, and, like fingernails, they grow back.
The grand animals are killed for their horns, used as carving material and in traditional Chinese medicine. Groundbreaking work to keep alive the northern white rhino subspecies by in-vitro fertilization has been stalled by travel restrictions.
The 44-year-old rhino, Sudan, and his last two female companions are unable to breed naturally because of issues that include old age, casting the fate of the species even more into doubt.
Rhino populations have been decimated by the demand for rhino horn in traditional Chinese medicine. Now a report suggests that there is a new market to drive poaching.
The auction reopens the debate on whether controlled sales should be allowed or whether there should be a total ban on rhino horn sales.
The floods in India's Assam state have killed at least 28 people and are also threatening its wildlife, including the one-horned rhinoceros.
The security measure comes a day after poachers killed a four-year-old rhino and removed the animal's horn at Thoiry Zoo, west of the French capital, Paris.
The illegal hunters broke into Thoiry zoo, west of Paris, killed the rare white rhino before sawing off its horn. A kilogramme of rhino horn fetched 51,000 euros ($53,900) on the black market in 2015.
Namibia, Zimbabwe and Swaziland failed to convince a UN body to let them legally sell existing stockpiles of ivory and rhino horn to fund conservation efforts.
After the success of this project, South African scientists will now focus on breeding more endangered species, like the almost extinct northern white rhino.
Swaziland seeks to sell stockpiles of rhino horn to help pay for anti-poaching efforts.
South Africa won't push to have global ban on rhino horn trade lifted but maintains its policy of stockpiling
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