signs of browsing
Rhinos are not especially fussy eaters, but black rhinos will travel extraordinary distances to find their perfect browse.
The black rhino is known to eat more than 200 different plant species. It has a hooked, prehensile upper lip for stripping leaves from twigs and branches, eating succulents and plucking tasty herbs and forbs from among the grass.
In Botswana, black rhinos favour leguminous plants, such as acacias. These plants fix atmospheric nitrogen, making their leaves rich in protein and highly nutritious. Unlike the white rhino, they do not eat much grass.
With its distinctive wide, flat upper lip, the white rhino efficiently crops even short grass on the plains.
Both rhinos need to drink large amounts of water daily to stay hydrated in the heat, and they need to wallow to stay cool, so their territories always contain a water source. During the dry season, they can go several days without water as they search for a waterbody that has not yet dried up.