In 1556 AD Seydi Ali Reis, an Ottoman Admiral, travelled through the Khyber Pass and saw two rhinos there.
In his book “Mirat ul Mamalik”, Seydi Ali Reis writes : “After crossing the rivers Khushab and Nilab (Indus) in ships, I set foot upon the shore of Bakhtar (Kabulistan). In the beginning of the month Jumada al-Awwal we left the river Nilab and turned toward Kabul. For fear of the Afghans (Pashtuns) under Adam Khan, we made a quick march through the night, and at daybreak we arrived at the foot of the mountain. So far the Afghans had not seen us, but by the time we had reached the top there were thousands of them gathered together. We seized our guns, and with God’s help managed to get out of their way, and came to the town of Pershuer, i.e., Peshawer. Soon after, we crossed the Khaiber Pass, and reached Djushai (?). In the mountains we saw two rhinoceroses (Kerkedans), each the size of a small elephant; they have a horn on their nose about two inches long. In Abyssinia these animals are much more plentiful.”
|A 16th century painting showing Mughal emperor Babur hunting rhinos near Bagram (Peshawar). His son Humayun also hunted rhinos in the present-day Nowshera district.|