alexa A Comparative Study of Some Morphological and Microscopic Identifying Features of Genuine Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) Horns and Fake Horns
ISSN: 2157-7145

Journal of Forensic Research
Open Access

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Research Article

A Comparative Study of Some Morphological and Microscopic Identifying Features of Genuine Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) Horns and Fake Horns

Dinesh Kumar Jha*, Nirajan Thapa Kshetry, Basanta Raj Pokharel, Raju Panday and Nanda Kumar Aryal

National Forensic Science Laboratory, Khumaltar, Nepal

*Corresponding Author:
Dinesh Kumar Jha
National Forensic Science Laboratory
Biology Division (Wild life Unit), GPO 4540 Kathmandu, Nepal
Tel: 977-1-5526927, 5553049
Fax: 977-1-5532853
E-mail: [email protected]

Received Date: September 28, 2015; Accepted Date: December 25, 2015; Published Date: December 29, 2015

Citation: Jha DK, Kshetry NT, Pokharel BR, Panday R, Aryal NK (2015) A Comparative Study of Some Morphological and Microscopic Identifying Features of GenuineRhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) Horns and Fake Horns. J Forensic Res 6:315. doi: 10.4172/2157-7145.1000315

Copyright: © 2015 Jha DK, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.



Rhino horn is hard, elongated, conical structure composed entirely of keratin but lacking bony core. Illegal trade of rhino horn has high financial rewards. Both genuine and fake horns are confiscated by authorities and sent for identification. Various morphological and microscopic features of 214 genuine horns of one horned Rhino (Rhinoceros unicornis) stored at Armed Forest Protection Training Centre, Tikauli and Office of the Chitwan National Park, Kasara, Nepal were studied. The studied morphological parameters were color, surface texture, height, mass, basal circumference, frontal groove, basal elevation, porosity, light penetration capability at the base and density. Similarly, microscopic features like shape, size and frequency of filamentous units, Interfilamentous space, ratio of medulla and filamentous unit and laminae were studied after thin transverse sections made from the tip of 140 genuine horns. Some of these features were compared with that of 65 fake horns which were received in the laboratory and identified as fake samples. The distinctive filamentous units were observed in all studied genuine rhino horns with varied number, shape and sizes. Based on this study, identifying features of genuine rhino horns were properly established. The study also reveals the possibility of approximation of maturity of rhino horns.


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