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Asian Rhinoceros

Asian Rhinoceros Facts

Size Up to 5 ft (180 m) (shoulder height)
Speed Up to 31 mph (50 km/h)
Weight 1,100-4,850 lb (500-2,200 kg)
Lifespan 35-50 years
Food Plants
Predators -
Habitat Indonesia, India
Order Odd-toed ungulates
Family Rhinocerosses
Scientific name Rhinoceros unicornis (Indian), Rhinoceros sondaicus (Javan), Dicerorhinus sumatrensis (Sumatran)
Characteristics 1-2 horns on the nose, massive body, short legs

Main Characteristics

The Asian rhinos include the Sumatran rhino, the Javan rhino, and the Indian rhino. All three species are endangered to become extinct. They live Asia where they inhabit tropical rainforests and mountain forests, grasslands and swampy landscapes.

Indian RhinocerosIndian Rhinoceros - Photo: Nataly Reinch/Shutterstock

Anatomy and Appearance

How Many Horns Do Asian Rhinos Have?

The Indian and the Javan rhino have one horn, while the Sumatran rhino has two horns.


• The Javan Rhino

The Javan rhino lives in Indonesia in the dense evergreen forest next to small rivers and swamps. It loves to wallow in the mud to cool its body. This also protects it from insects as their jaws cannot cope with the thick layer of mud on its skin. A refreshing bath has yet another advantage, because it allows the Javanese rhino to use the help of hungry fish to get rid of ticks and leeches.

Javan RhinocerosJavan Rhinoceros - Photo: Reinhol Leitner/Shutterstock

• The Indian Rhino

The Indian rhino is closely related to the Javan rhino, but lives in India. Both have overlapping skin folds that look like an impressive armor. Indian rhinos are bold: They even attack elephants if they invade their territory.

Indian Rhinoceros Indian Rhinoceros - Photo: Silke/

• The Sumatran Rhino

The Sumatran rhino lives in Inonesia. It is the smallest species and weighs „only“ between 1,100-2,200 lb (500-1,000 kg). The Javan rhino weighs approximately 1.8 tons and the Indian rhino up to 2.2 tons. The Sumatran rhino prefers to live in landscapes with hills and mountains and is very good at getting along in steep terrain. In contrast to other rhinos, the Sumatran species has got some hair.

Sumatran RhinocerosSumatran Rhinoceros - Photo: Judy Whitton/Shutterstock

Enemies and Threats

Why Are Rhinos Being Hunted?

Unfortunately, the horn of the rhino is highly sought after. The Chinese believe that horn powder can cure fever seizures and rheumatism and helps to remove toxic substances from the body. The Romans used rhino horns to manufacture drinking vessels, because they thought the horn could render poisonous drinks harmless (Romans often poisoned each other). Poor rhino!


Can Rhinos Swim?

The African ones not, but the Asian ones do - this is quite amazing considering their weight!

Fun Facts

Are There Rhinos With Fur?

Actually you can't call it fur, but young Sumatran rhinos have hair all over their body. The other rhino species don't have hair, except on their ears and tail.

The Asian Rhinoceros Is Related To:

Animals in the Same Biome:

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