New rhino arrives at Henry Vilas Zoo

New rhino arrives at Henry Vilas Zoo

A new rhino is making his home at the Henry Vilas Zoo in Madison.

The white rhinoceros named Harmon arrived at the zoo this week, and will live in the zoo’s upgraded rhino exhibit.

His arrival was thanks in part to the community’s generosity last November during “Giving Tuesday.”

“We are excited to welcome Harmon and continue our on-going contribution to rhino conservation efforts here at Henry Vilas Zoo,” said Dane County Executive Joe Parisi. “Henry Vilas Zoo has always been a community supported zoo, and we are so grateful to the community for helping us raise the funds to refurbish our rhino exhibit and help us bring a rhino back to the zoo.”

Outdoor space for the rhino to roam was increased 40 percent, the mud wallow was upgraded and part of the yard once used for tapirs is now converted for rhino use. The air handling unit in the rhino building was also replaced.

White rhinos are near threatened in the wild as the result of illegal poaching.

Last November, the Friends of the Zoo raised more than $21,000, with a $10,000 matching gift from an anonymous donor on “Giving Tuesday” to support the arrival of a new rhino, as well as the improvements to the zoo’s existing rhino exhibit.