After a two-week-long poll, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay Facebook fans have named the park’s newest member, a southern white rhino calf. After a close tally, the winning name for the almost one-month-old rhino is Nyota (Knee-yotah) which means “star”.
The Busch Gardens animal care team has successfully introduced Nyota and her mother Kasiri to the rest of the park’s southern white rhinoceros herd, also known as a crash, on the Serengeti Plain habitat.
Guests can catch a glimpse of the new little star when they participate in the Serengeti Safari experience.
“Kasiri and Nyota are doing well on the Serengeti Plain. Nyota is exploring her environment and is developing as expected. She is having fun exploring mud holes, fighting with palm fronds and seems to enjoy showing the other rhinos and animals on the Serengeti Plain how tough she is. Nyota is full of energy and curiosity, she loves running around and showing off hers bucks and hops for guests on the train or tour trucks,” said Jason Green, assistant curator at Busch Gardens Tampa Bay.
The birth is part of Busch Gardens’ participation in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ (AZA) Species Survival Plan (SSP). The mission of the SSP is to cooperatively manage specific species populations within AZA-accredited facilities.