Last Male White Rhino Under 24-Hour Watch

The last living male northern white rhinoceros on earth is named Sudan and lives in central Kenya.     Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Last Male White Rhino Under 24-Hour Watch

Conservationists place mating hopes on aging male

The last living male northern white rhinoceros on earth, named Sudan, is under the round-the-clock armed guard protection at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in central Kenya, according to CNN. The animal is considered elderly, has a low sperm count, and may not be able to mount the two females with whom he shares a habitat. Nevertheless, conservationists are still hoping that the 42-year-old rhino will be able to conceive before he dies.

“There has been recorded mating between different pairs over the last few years, but not conceptions,” George Paul, the deputy veterinarian at the conservancy, told CNN. “Based on a recent health examination conducted, both animals have a regular estrus cycle, but no conception has been recorded.”

Paul said that the Ol Pejeta Conservancy is currently holding a fundraiser to train Sudan’s guards to be better prepared against poachers, who for years have sought out northern white rhinos for their horns. Rhino horns have been prescribed as an aphrodisiac or a cure for various fevers and convulsions in some Asian countries, despite objections from the Register of Chinese Herbal Medicine.

The options for Sudan’s caretakers are limited. It would be possible for him to mate with a southern white rhino, a species that is not endangered, though the offspring would no longer contain 100 percent northern white rhino genetic material. Conservancy directors have also discussed methods of in vitro fertilization and embryo transfer—methods that have been used in the past with other critically endangered species.

“Realistically, we are looking at these animals dying in the next decade or so. But hopefully, using artificial methods of reproduction, we might be able to bring them back in the future,” Paul told CNN. “This might mean that it will happen when the current animals are already deceased, but it could happen.”


Marathon Weekend

Kendall Schler probably entered the course somewhere toward the end of the Go! St. Louis Marathon.     Photo: Paul Sableman/Flickr

St. Louis Marathon Winner Disqualified

Officials cite suspicious circumstances

On Sunday, Kendall Schler was named winner of the 2015 Go! St. Louis Marathon. She finished in third place the year before, so the win seemed plausible—until race officials discovered that there were no recorded splits from her run via an electronic chip and no witnesses of her during the race. Upon further investigation, officials found the same to be true of her race in 2014.

“We assume she entered the course somewhere toward the end of the race, not knowing that she was going to cross the finish line and break the tape,” Nancy Lieberman, president of host organization Go! St. Louis, told Outside. “Once we did our due diligence, we disqualified her.”

Lieberman says that race officials reviewed a three-point checklist before the decision, including checking with the timing company, USATF spotters along the course, and finally speaking with the cyclist who accompanied the lead woman during the entire race. After a phone call with Schler, during which Lieberman says Schler “didn’t give a full explanation” of what had occurred, the race was forced to nullify her results.

According to Lieberman, Schler had registered for the 2015 Boston Marathon on Monday using her 2014 St. Louis result to qualify. Lieberman informed the Boston Athletic Association, which revoked Schler’s entry.

“With respect to Boston and respect to runners throughout the world who want to run the race, we want to maintain its integrity,” Lieberman says.

Schler declined to comment for this article.

Andrea Karl, a graduate student at Washington University in St. Louis, was recognized for her win, finishing in 2:54:29. Lieberman says a special award ceremony will be held for Karl at Busch Stadium on Sunday night.

“I don’t have any hard feelings toward her,” Karl told Outside. “I was just out there to run my race and have a good time. I’m not concerning myself with the other events.”


WATCH: Kelly Slater Pitted in Perfect 10

Kelly Slater received the first score of ten at the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro.     Photo: burroblando/Flickr

WATCH: Kelly Slater Pitted in Perfect 10

First flawless score in Margaret River Pro

Eleven-time world surfing champion Kelly Slater scored a perfect ten in a heavy barrel at the Drug Aware Margaret River Pro, the third stop on the World Surf League Pro Tour.

Slater’s score of 19.50 is the highest heat score of the Australian contest so far and marks the contest’s first perfect wave. He will advance to the fourth round.