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KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 21, 2015:

The Sumatran rhinoceros (dicerorhinus sumatrensis) in the wilds of the country is most likely extinct, according to leading scientists and experts who made the startling revelation.

This conclusion was published in the International Journal of Conservation, led by the University of Copenhagen’s Centre for Macroecology, Evolution and Climate.

The research paper stated that despite intensive surveying efforts having been made, there had been no signs of Sumatran rhinos in the country’s wilds since 2007.

“Scientists now consider the species extinct in the wilds of Malaysia,” a report published in Science Daily, citing the Natural History Museum of Denmark, said.

Scientists are now resting their hopes on the “100 or fewer” remaining Sumatran rhinoceros in the wilds of Indonesia, apart from the nine in captivity.

They urged that conservation efforts in Indonesia should “pick up pace”.

The nine rhinos in captivity are in Sabah, the US as well as Sumatra.

The population of the species had been in critical decline over the last decade, according to the report.

It noted that the population had also dropped from around 500 to almost extinction between 1980 and 2005 in the Kerinci Sebelat National Park in Sumatra.

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