By Dr. Angela Ryan, ABC News
Not only can you see the rhinoceros at the Cincinnati Zoo, but now visitors can listen to the heartbeat of a baby rhino in a new exhibit experience.
The exhibit features Charlotte, a life-sized, pregnant black rhinoceros replica that stands in the lobby of the Lindner Center for Conservation and Research of Endangered Wildlife (CREW) at the zoo.
Zoo visitors learn about the endangered species and efforts to preserve them, including the latest reproductive technology. That’s where they put their learning to practice by participating in a rectal ultrasound to find the heartbeat of Charlotte’s rhino fetus.
Briasia and Diarra are two eleventh-graders taking part in the Zoo Academy, a program for high school juniors and seniors interested in biology, animal care and conservation. The students spend time working with animals and zookeepers. Both young women aspire to become veterinarians and were some of the first to have the chance to work with Charlotte. "I was taken aback. It scared me. I really thought it was a real rhino!," Briasia said upon her initial experience with Charlotte. Diarra said "They did an amazing job. Just touching it is … just wow!"