A surprise guest will announce the winning name on May 4

Asheboro, NC – The North Carolina Zoo is enlisting the public’s help to name the new female baby rhino born at the Zoo on February 24. 

The new calf was born to mom Linda and dad Stormy. She weighed approximately 80-90 pounds at birth and the mom and calf are doing well. This was the second rhino birth just this year at the Zoo, and fourth in the last two years.

The public is asked to visit the online poll and rank four names, in order of their favorites, chosen by the Zoo’s rhino zookeepers.

  • Rubybelle (ru-bee-bell): name of a young female rhino rescued after her mother was poached in South Africa
  • Etosha (ee-toe-sha):  for Etosha National Park in Namibia where the Zoo has an anti-poaching conservation program.
  • Jojo (joe-joe): one of the keepers of rhino Sudan, the last male northern white rhino, at Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya. Jojo and Sudan’s story was featured in the documentary movie "Kifaru" which showed at RiverRun International Film Festival in 2019.      
  • Kendi (ken-dee): African origin – means loved one in Swahili

Voting opens at 12 p.m. Fri., April 17 and closes at 4 p.m., Fri., April 24 (all EDT). The online poll  can be accessed through the Zoo’s website at nczoo.org or through the Zoo’s social media channels on FacebookTwitter and Instagram. There is no charge to select a name.   

A special surprise guest will announce the winning name on May 4. We can't tell you who it is, here's a hint -- while this baby rhino is a "second,"  the special guest announcing the name is a "first."


About the North Carolina Zoo

At the North Carolina Zoo, we celebrate nature. As the world’s largest natural habitat Zoo, we inspire a lifelong curiosity about animals for the hundreds of thousands of people who visit our Zoo each year. Our dedicated team of experts provides exceptional, compassionate care for the more than 1,800 animals and 52,000 plants that call our Park home. We also lead efforts locally and globally to protect wildlife and wild places because we believe nature’s diversity is critical for our collective future. The North Carolina Zoo invites all of our guests to witness the majesty of the wild in the heart of North Carolina and welcomes everyone to join in our mission to protect nature’s diversity. Visit NCZoo.org to begin your life-changing journey.

About the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources

The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina. NCDNCR’s mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development. 

NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette’s Pier, 39 state parks and recreation areas, the North Carolina Zoo, the nation's first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship. For more information, please call 919- 807-7300 or visit www.ncdcr.gov.