THERE'S a newborn rhino at Australia Zoo, and the public have the chance to name her.

Rhinos Inyeti and DJ welcomed their first offspring into the world on thursday morning.

The female calf had a birth weight of about 45-50kgs.

Australia Zoo keeper Renee Schier said mum and bub were making great progress.

"We're very excited to announce that Inyeti, our southern white rhinoceros, gave birth to a beautiful baby girl yesterday. The calf is healthy and strong," she said.

Despite arriving a little earlier than anticipated the rhino is showing all of the normal signs for a healthy calf.

"We're really happy with her progress. She is already feeding and is quite active - she was walking within hours of the birth," added Renee.

This is Inyeti's first calf, and only the second rhino to be born at Australia Zoo and Queensland.

Inyeti and DJ are southern white rhinoceros, a species listed as near threatened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) due to poaching threats and illegal use of rhino horn.

To celebrate the new arrival, Australia Zoo is offering the public a chance to name the new calf in a Facebook competition.

The competition runs from Friday 8 February through until Monday 18 February.

Terri, Bindi and Robert Irwin will announce the lucky winner.

Inyeti and the calf will spend time bonding and will remain off display.

The public can keep up to date with the new calf by visiting www.australiazoo.com.au or the Australia Zoo Facebook site.


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