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  • Writer's pictureJenny Carless

Meet Maxwell

Updated: Mar 21, 2019

Meet Maxwell, an endangered black rhino who lives at the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust (DSWT) just outside Nairobi, Kenya.

The Sheldrick Trust is best known for its outstanding work in rescuing and rehabilitating orphan elephants—victims of ivory trafficking. But it has also been active in protecting black rhinos.

Max is blind. So, unlike the elephant orphans who surround him (and who will eventually move down to Tsavo East National Park and leave to join wild herds when they are ready), Max will remain at DSWT.

Staff at the Trust found Maxwell in 2007, about a year old at the time, wandering around and crying in Nairobi National Park not too far from their headquarters. They watched him all day and when, by dusk, they’d still seen no sign of a mother, they had to bring him “home” with them, or he would have fallen victim to predators. (They never found out what happened to Max’s mother.)

Max spends a lot of his day lying around in reddish-orange mud puddles, quite content. If you call his name, his cupped, elfin ears may spin around in your direction for a moment, but then he’ll just continue with his nap. He lives in an extra-large stockade by himself, but for the last few years, he’s had another rhino, Solio, next door for company.

In April 2013, Maxwell escaped, and the keepers had a tough job to get him back. (Check out this short video about the adventure.)

The Sheldrick family has also rescued some smaller animals. Nuk, the Gerenuk, found his way to a herd of goats as a baby. Read his story here. And I believe there are other small orphans around the property, too.

All in all, great work by great people.

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