Prince William Feeds a Black Rhino by Hand
06/19/2012 AT 10:50 AM EDT
Prince William turned up the PDA for his dog Lupo this weekend, but his royal highness has affection for other animals, too.
During a private visit to England's Port Lympne Wild Animal Park earlier this month, Will – the royal patron of wildlife conservation group Tusk Trust – interacted with the zoo's black rhinos. He got closest to a 5-year-old female named Zawadi and even fed her by hand.
Zawadi is one of three rhinos that have since been relocated to the wild in Tanzania, where the black rhino population is critically endangered due to poaching. The three rhinos were trained for weeks to prepare for their new life in Africa, getting new diets and interacting with zebras and giraffes.
The animals then flew on a custom DHL Boeing 757 and received in-flight meals of carrots, celery, hay, apples, spinach and bananas.