Three critically endangered Javan rhino calves have made an appearance in Indonesia's Ujung Kulon National Park, giving hope to conservationists who recently established a rhino sanctuary within the park's borders.

As far as we can tell, two of the tiny tank-like beasts (filmed in April and May) are male, and the third (filmed in July) is female. "They likely were all born this year," park chief Mohammad Haryono told The Jakarta Post"They were all born from different mothers, and both the parents and their youngsters look healthy."

Sadly, the calves increase the world's Javan rhino population to only around 60 animals – all living in Ujung Kulon. Because they exist in a single location, the rhinos are especially susceptible to threats from disease and habitat destruction.

"Natural disasters are also a concern," explains the International Rhino Foundation (IRF), who have been working to protect the park for 19 years. "Ujung Kulon and the surrounding areas were decimated by the eruption of Krakatau in 1883. Anak Krakatau is now active and if a similar eruption were to occur in the near future, the Javan rhino population would not be safe."

But no threat poses as daunting a challenge as poaching – something the IRF takes very seriously. The organisation's rhino protection units work tirelessly to protect the park's precious inhabitants. "We patrol and survey on foot, motorbike, and by boat to monitor Javan rhinos and other threatened species," they say. "We immediately remove any traps or snares discovered during patrols and investigate any illegal activity, including illegal hunting and fishing, illegal logging, and construction of camps or houses."

We're keeping our fingers crossed for the three calves, and hope to see them show up on camera traps in the future!

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Top header image: AFT/screengrab from YouTube