Endangered black rhino dies at Phnx zoo during transport

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Endangered black rhino dies in Phoenix

PHOENIX - An endangered black rhinoceros died in Phoenix Monday night.

The 8-year-old female black rhino was being driven from a zoo in Kansas City to the Oregon zoo in Portland but sadly, she did not make it.

We have white rhinos at the Phoenix zoo, but Tuesday afternoon the staff here was busy desperately trying to save the life of a black rhino named Kipenzi.

The Oregon zoo's has only black rhino, Pete. The plan was to have Kipenzi mate with Pete since the black rhino is an endangered species.

3TV obtained video of a black rhino being loaded into a crate for transportation at the Little Rock Zoo. 3TV was told the black rhino that passed away was in a similar crate when she was being moved across the country.

However early Tuesday morning they had just passed through Phoenix when the drivers felt the rhino making erratic movements in the back.

The curator and the keeper who were also in the truck say they could feel the animal rocking in the back and pulled over to check on her. They found her down and thrashing in the back of the truck.

Kipenzi was rushed to the Phoenix Zoo where a team of vets and animal experts worked to save the big girl. A vet even flew from Portland to assist.

However, despite their best efforts the rhino did not survive. They say it could take up to three weeks to figure out exactly what went wrong.

Poaching has nearly wiped out the world's population of black rhinos. In 1970 there were about 65,000. Today that number has plummeted to a little less than 3,700.