Google on Sunday published a doodle on its homepage to celebrate Sudan, the world’s last surviving male northern white rhino, who passed away on March 19, 2018.
In the 1970s, Sudan escaped extinction of his kind in the wild when he was moved to Dvůr Králové Zoo in the Czech Republic and eventually to Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya.
His death left only two females, his daughter, Najin, and granddaughter, Fatu, of the subspecies alive in the world.
Following the global environment campaign in 2008 by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the northern white rhino was declared extinct in the wild.
This resulted in Sudan spending a decade under 24-hour armed surveillance at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy.
The 45-year-old white rhino, upon his demise, was the equivalent of 90 in human years and was long past his breeding age.
At the time of his death, he was one of only three living northern white rhinoceroses in the world and the last known male of his subspecies.
“Sudan will live to be remembered as the last male northern white rhino of his kind. Today as we celebrate him, may we strive to protect the environment and wildlife which is the foundation of all civilisation,” Dorothy Ooko, head of Communications and Public Affairs, Africa said.
Before his death, Sudan was being treated for age-related complications that led to degenerative changes in muscles and bones combined with extensive skin wounds.
The Ol Pejeta conservancy said Sudan’s condition worsened significantly in the last 24 hours as he was unable to stand up and was suffering a great deal.
“The veterinary team from the Dvůr Králové Zoo, Ol Pejeta and Kenya Wildlife Service made the decision to euthanise him,” Ol Pejeta said in 2018.
The conservancy said Sudan will be remembered for his unusually memorable life.
“Throughout his existence, he significantly contributed to the survival of his species as he sired two females,” the conservator said.