Bold Genetic Tech to Save White Rhinos
Through artificial insemination, a southern white rhino named Victoria is pregnant at the San Diego Zoo. This pregnancy is a major triumph for a species tettering on extinction. Researchers hope Victoria can save the northern white rhino sub-species.
Poaching Decimated the Herds
The last northern white male rhino died 2 months ago of old age and illness in Kenya. But the northern white herd has been decimated by poachers. Victoria needs to carry her calf to term 16 to 18 months. If she does, she could serve as a surrogate mother for the northern white rhino. She's one of 6 female southern white rhinos at the Zoo whom scientists hope can serve as surrogate mothers for the northern white. There are only 2 female northern white rhinos left in existence. They're in Kenya but incapable of bearing a calf.
Genetic Technology at Work to Save a Species
There are no northern white rhino eggs. Scientists are using genetic technology to convert frozen skin cells from dead rhinos into stem cell and eventually, they hope, into embryos through invitro fertilization. Their grand plan is to save the sub-species. They hope to build a northern white rhino herd of 5 to 15 and return them to their native Africa. That plan will take decades. And it's a race against time.