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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

New Javan Rhino Flash Fiction

The rare Javan rhino.
Today's the day! My story, "The Last Ultrasound," will appear at Linguistic Erosion.

"The Last Ultrasound" is the first of five short-shorts to be published in honor of a specific species of rhinoceros. Perhaps it's a coincidence, but it seems fitting to start with the rarest of all rhinos, the Javan, which number today only about 30 in the wild. Contrary to what the story describes, there are no Javan rhinos in captivity anywhere in the world.

Their rarity makes Javan rhinos difficult to describe. They appear to be mostly solitary. The only camera trap photos with more than one animal in them show a mother and calf. In appearance, the Javan is similar to the Greater One-Horned or Indian rhino, but averages about two-thirds the size of its bigger relative. One big difference between the two species is that female rhinos don't appear to grow a horn beyond the smallest stump. All other rhino species have horn growth in both sexes.

The most charming thing about Javan rhinos is that they really love to swim. It's real swimming, not just wading. Check it out:

Although "The Last Ultrasound" might paint a grim picture, there is still hope for the real-life Javan rhinos. Thank you very much for reading! Remember: no one needs a rhino horn but a rhino.