All this has doomed the rhino, which is being poached in record numbers across its range.
Four species of rhinos - the Javan, black, Sumatran, and Indian - which are highly endangered are already protected under the Endangered Species Act. The southern white rhino is the fifth and final addition (the northern white subspecies went extinct in 2006).
Despite its name, the southern white rhino is grey and a hulking beast weighing about 3,300 to 5,300 pounds with a heights of about 6 feet (1.85 m).
There are 20,160 individuals of the southern white rhino in the wilds of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe.
The world was successfully protecting the southern white rhinoceros under an international wildlife trafficking agreement called "Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species" or CITES. Then in 1995, lobbying by South Africa de-listed the nation's southern white rhino population as a "most endangered" species under CITES, and allowed limited hunting and exports.