Malaysia Map

Hunted down to extinction - Javan Rhinoceros.

There used to be two species of rhinoceros roaming in the jungle of Malaya. The critically endangered Sumatran Rhinoceros (Dicerorhinus sumatrensis) and the extinct Javan or Lesser One-Horned Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros sondaicus).

A file picture of a Dicerorhinus Sumatrensis, or Sumatran Rhino

Javan Rhinoceros - Photograph courtesy Ujung Kulon National Park and WWF
The last known specimens of Javan Rhinoceros was last shot at Ujong Permatang, Selangor in 1928 and Telok Anson, Perak in 1932.  Large rhinoceros track, possibly of this species, were reported from eastern Johore 1949. (transcript from "Wild Mammals of Malaya and offshore islands including Singapore by Lord Medway).

However, it is clearly that the Javan Rhinoceros has been totally hunted down to extinction from Malaysia Peninsula.

An undated photo of a Javan Rhinoceros shot dead by hunting party somewhere in the jungle of Malay Peninsula.

A photo of a young but dead Javan Rhinoceros in Ujung Kulon, the hunter is Charles te Mechelen, 1895 - source Wikipedia.

Rhinoceros sondaicus sondaicus in Ujung Kulon, 1930 - source Wikipedia

Head of a male Rhinoceros sondaicus sondaicus shot on 31 January 1934 at Sindangkerta in West Java - source Wikipedia

Javan Rhino in the London Zoo from March 1874 until January 1885 - source Wikipedia

Head of a male Rhinoceros sondaicus annamiticus shot in Perak on the Malay Peninsula - Source Wikipedia

The following is a transcript from the book of "Rare Animals of the World ~ by Franceso B. Salvadori

Description.  The Javan Rhinoceros differs from the Indian Rhinoceros in that it is slightly smaller with one of the characteristic folds of loose skin meeting over the shoulders.  The horn is also very small in the male and virtually nonexistent in the female.  The head is slimmer and longer with a slightly extended upper lip.  AN adult can measure 10ft (3m) in length, including tail, with a shoulder height of 4 ft (1.40m).  Not much is known about its habits, but its diet is similar to that of the Indian Rhinoceros - shoots and leaves of shrub which it tears off with its flexible upper lip.  The Javan Rhinoceros reaches maturity very quickly and adults are not gregarious.

Geographic distribution.  Once distributed over a large part of India, Bangladesh, Burma, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, The Malaysian Peninsula, and the islands of Sumatra and Java.  It is certainly present n the Udjong-Kulon Reserve at the extreme western tip of Java.

Habitat.  It prefers areas of dense vegetation: forests and high mountain forests, marshy areas, and coastal zones.

Population.  In 1950 the Javan Rhinoceros was still present in the Sunderbans, the Brahmaputra Valley, and the Chittagong HIlls, but probabbly extinct by the 1960s.  By the 1980s the only viable population was in the Udjong-Kulong Reserve in Java.  Is is one of the rarest mammals in the world, and by the late 19801s its total population had fallen to less than 50 individuals, and last-ditch attempts were being made to maintain a captive stock.