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Rare Rhino Calf at the Great Plains Zoo Receives Name


November 22, 2016

The rare Eastern Black Rhino calf born at the Great Plains Zoo on September 12 now has a name. “Komati” (KO-mah-tee), which is also a river in South Africa, was selected by the public for the male calf. The Zoo received more than 350 votes over a 13-day period.

The Zoo invited adults and children to choose between five traditional African names selected by the Zoo’s animal care staff, and hundreds of votes were received online, via text message and at the Zoo. People were able cast a vote for their favorite name for just $1 per entry with all proceeds going to benefit the International Rhino Foundation.

With Komati and his parents, Jubba and Imara, the Great Plains Zoo now holds three of only 58 Eastern Black Rhinos in North America. It is estimated that fewer than 740 Eastern Black Rhinos are left in the wild, and they are considered to be a critically endangered species. Komati is the third Rhino born at the Zoo, and he was the first Eastern Black Rhino born as part of the Association of Zoos & Aquarium’s (AZA) endangered species breeding program since 2014.

The Great Plains Zoo & Delbridge Museum of Natural History is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. Visit the Zoo online at or call 605-367-7003 for more information about the Zoo and Museum.

  • Love this zoo! Great place to get a walk in and the animals are everywhere! The museum/indoor part is very educational too. Has a lot of shade for when it's hot out. Very clean. Friendly staff.

    Taylor F.
  • We love to visit the zoo. They have great outdoor exhibits and lots to do inside as well. Great for kids and adults.

    Robin A.
  • Lots of great exhibits and animals to see! Fun gift shop and learning center.

    Stephanie N.
  • The museum gives you a break from the sun on hot summer days and has a great selection of animal exhibits from around the world. ¬†The zoo keeps growing and adding new animal habitats or improving existing ones. ¬†Membership offers reciprocal benefits to other zoos around the country.

    Bill T.