South African white rhinos set to debut at Wildlife World Zoo

- Hoof and stock keeper at Wildlife World Zoo, Spencer Platek has spent a lot of time getting to know these white rhinos, and he says each one has a distinct and different temperament.

"Amani and Meshaka like to duel sometimes, Zuri is what we call our whiny baby," he said. "It's just been fun getting to know their personalities. Obviously, they came to us brand new, we had to learn them, they had to learn us."

The rhinos are about 2 years old and weigh about 1,000 pounds each.

They came to Wildlife World Zoo last October from South Africa. Spokesperson for the zoo, Kristy Morcom says having them here is just as much about education as it is conservation.

According to Morcom, rhinos are one of the most endangered animals in the world.

"Right now in South Africa alone there are three to four rhinos being poached every single day," she said.

Keepers are hopeful the rhinos will breed in a few years with the zoos' adult male rhino. Until then, they have settled nicely into their home.

"Hopefully, we help the species and create some more genetic diversity," Platek said.

Their exhibit is nestled in the center of the 8-acre expansion of the safari park. The rhinos' neighbors include striped hyenas, hamadryas baboons, birds, and other animals native to the region.

"Being here in Arizona, the African species thrive back here, they're able to be in an environment similar to their natural habitat," Morcom said.

The new safari park expansion officially opens to the public on Saturday.

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