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Rescued orphaned rhino calf and baby zebra bond

Credits: Care For Wild-Rhino-Sanctuary
Credits: Care For Wild-Rhino-Sanctuary

In December 2021, rangers in South Africa’s Kruger National Park found an orphaned baby rhino still linked to its umbilical cord. The newborn rhino calf was weak and unable to stand when found. She was rushed-to the ICU at the Care For Wild Rhino Sanctuary in South Africa by helicopter (ICU).

A zebra foal was found barely breathing following heavy rains and storms in Kruger National Park. Baby zebra Modjadji was brought to the sanctuary’s ICU for septicemia and anemia. These two lovely newborns probably wouldn’t have met in the wild. At the Care For Wild-Rhino-Sanctuary, the newborn rhino and zebra foal are helping each other heal and grow.

All photos credit:- Care For Wild-Rhino-Sanctuary


Daisy’s mother wasn’t around when the rangers found her. Daisy’s mother may have been poached, while the actual cause is unknown. After a “distressing week” in South Africa, the young rhino was found when hundreds of rhinos were slain by poachers. Poachers only take the moms’ horns, prized in Asian countries like China, and leave the calves behind.


After round-the-clock care and feeding, both orphaned babies survived. Daisy needed extra treatments to enhance her immune system and maintain her body temperature because she was too young and didn’t absorb colostrum from her mother.


On the road to recovery, Modjajdi befriended Daisy and became the baby rhino’s companion and guardian. Modjadji and Daisy are sisters after a month. Modjadji follows Daisy everywhere. Louwhen-Bowker, media contact at Care For Wild Rhino Sanctuary, said, “As they became stronger and braver, their curiosity got the best-of-them, and they started interacting.”

Rhinos are friendly and need company. Daisy loves having Modjadji around. Daisy sleeps soundly while they cuddle. Daisy’s 24/7 companionship helps her avoid the human touch.


In the weeks-and-months that followed, these two babies built a strong connection that helped them heal. Daisy is too frail and vulnerable to be introduced to the other orphaned rhinos at the sanctuary. Rachael Pfeiffer from Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary said, “It will be a while before she can handle the other orphans.” Aquazi, her age-mate from the ICU, was too raucous for her at this point. Modjadji’s importance is evident.”


The Care for Wild Rhino Sanctuary has documented its journey on social media.

The sanctuary started on January 28, “Nothing gets past these two.” Modjadji showed Daisy where milk is prepared during playtime outside the ICU. These pals are mischievous…”

The shelter said on March 30: “Their friendship is extraordinary.” Daisy is very close to Modjadji. “Like other newborns, Daisy and Modjadji love their milk. Both are three months old and fed every 2-3 hours day and night. Daisy drinks

1L per feed. Modjadji is more delicate and quieter than Daisy.” Instagram’s sanctuary.

“During their playtime-outside the ICU, Modjadji decided to show Daisy where the milk is made! These two friends are becoming very naughty….”

“Modjadji is so sweet-and-gentle and loves to cuddle. She is always so affectionate with little-Daisy, but today she came up to caregiver Will and just lent in for a hug.”


Daisy, Modjadji, and the other orphaned rhinos will be released into the wild as they recuperate and develop. The sanctuary’s mission is to “conserve viable Black and White rhino breeding populations in protected regions through community involvement and sustainable solutions.”

The special relationship and bond these orphaned babies acquired during therapy will last.

The sanctuary paired a baby black rhino and a goat. Pfeiffer: “Rhino rescue and recovery are slow.” 17-month-olds drink milk. Daisy, 3, will be rewilded. She’ll be 5-6.

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Written by Malith92

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