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SOS Rhino : In the News : Scientists invent tool to inseminate rhinos

Scientists invent tool to inseminate rhinos


Story filed: 11:10 Monday 17th March 2003

German scientists have developed a special tool to artificially inseminate rhinos.

The catheter was developed by a team of Berlin scientists, who have already tested it on a number of rhinos.

It is made of flexible carbon fibres and has a tilted tip to match the special anatomy of large mammals.

So far, no African rhinos have ever been artificially inseminated in captivity.

But veterinary medical expert Thomas Hildebrandt says he is confident his team will be successful "in the near future".

Some 15 zoos in Europe and northern America are cooperating with the Berlin team.

In one of their attempts, a female rhino was impregnated, but the pregnancy didn't last.

Hildebrandt says the tool has proved uniquely successful.

"Nobody else ever got this far and actually carried out any insemination attempts," he said.

The tool can also be used for other large mammals like tapirs or giraffes.



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