There are now a total of 4,014 greater one-horned rhinos in the wild, split between India and Nepal. Assam, the Indian province that hosts 70% of the species’ population, just finished its biannual rhino survey and counted 274 more rhinos than the last survey.
The increase is partially due to a “baby boom” during the pandemic, when protected areas were closed to visitors, says the foundation.
In addition to the pandemic, the International Rhino Foundation credits the governments of India and Nepal for helping grow the rhinos’ populations. Both governments have implemented measures to protect the animals’ habitats to give “rhinos the space they need to breed” and to combat poaching.
Since then, the one-horned rhino has made a remarkable comeback thanks to conservationists.
Still, “the story isn’t over yet,” says the International Rhino Foundation. “The species is still classified as vulnerable and inhabits only a fraction of its former range.”