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Potter Park Zoo to hold Farewell Party for endangered black rhino

Jaali the Black Rhino, Potter Park Zoo
Posted at 3:42 PM, Sep 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-29 15:42:40-04

LANSING, Mich. — Potter Park Zoo is hosting a going away party this weekend (Oct. 2-3) to to give fans of Jaali, the zoo's first black rhino, one last chance to see the endangered animal.

The Zoo celebrated the birth of Jaali on Christmas Day in 2019, who was one of only a few black rhinos born in zoos accreddited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) each year.

“We are incredibly grateful our community has embraced Jaali with such enthusiasm"” said Zoo Director Cindy Wagner. “While we will all miss Jaali, we also celebrate as he moves to The Living Desert Zoo where he will continue the growth of a genetically diverse population of rhinos in human care which is critical to the future of black rhinos.”

Only 55 eastern black rhinos are cared for at AZA accredited facilities, with only 5,400 black rhinos remaining in the wild.

Earlier this year, it was announced that a breeding match for Jaali had been identified by the AZA’s Species Survival Plan. A young female, from Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, will meet Jaali at their new home, The Living Desert Zoo, later this fall.

“Jaali’s captured all of our hearts over the past two years,” said Animal Care Supervisor Pat Fountain. “Not only are we excited for his future, but also for the continued black rhino breeding program at Potter Park Zoo.”

During the event, zookeepers will provide rhino enrichment every two hours, starting at 10 a.m. and ending at 4 p.m.

Interactive education stations will also be available, along with a special banner for guests to sign.

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