Toronto Zoo turns to public for help naming rhino calf
Chris Fox, CP24.com
Published Wednesday, April 27, 2016 11:24AM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, April 27, 2016 11:44AM EDT
The Toronto Zoo is turning to members of the public for help in selecting a name for its new rhino calf.
The male calf was born on Feb. 17 following a grueling 16-month pregnancy but to date zoo officials have been unable to settle on a name for the animal with its three primary caretakers each backing a different one.
In an effort to settle the dispute, the zoo has announced that it will let member of the public vote on the names.
The names are Nandu, Kaziranga and Vihaan.
Nandu means one who is always cheerful and happy while Vihaan can mean dawn of the morning or the beginning of a new era. Kaziranga, meanwhile, is the name of a national park in northeast india that is home to more than half of the world’s one-horned rhinoceroses.
The caretaker who came up with Kaziranga told reporters on Wednesday that her hope is that when people hear the name they will take a moment to think about the plight that rhinos face in the world.
“They are critically endangered and they are in a lot of trouble,” she said.
There are about 3,000 one-horned rhinoceroses in the world.
The rhino calf at the Toronto Zoo is the first offspring to parents Vishnu and Ashakiran.
“He is obviously a healthy baby boy and when people see him they instantly fall in love with him,” the caretaker who wants the calf to be named Nandu said on Wednesday. “You can’t help but smile when you see him.”
Members of the public will have until May 19 to visit the Toronto Zoo website and choose which name they think is best for the endangered animal.