‘Fascinating and rare’: Baby pygmy hippo born at Va. zoo
A baby pygmy hippopotamus — native to West Africa and with just a few thousand of its kind left in the wild — was born on Dec. 6 at the Metro Richmond Zoo
Do you want a hippopotamus for Christmas? Well, a zoo in Virginia released cute pictures of a new rare hippo just in time for the holidays.
A baby pygmy hippopotamus — native to West Africa and with just a few thousand of its kind left in the wild — was born on Dec. 6 at the Metro Richmond Zoo, according to a news release from the zoo on Thursday.
The still unnamed female hippo calf is the second to be born at the zoo, and in Virginia, according to the release. She was born to pygmy hippo parents Iris and Corwin, following a 7-month gestation period.
The healthy baby hippo last clocked in at 24.2 pounds about 10 days post-birth, the zoo said. At its full-grown size, a pygmy hippo can weigh up to 600 pounds.
“Iris is an experienced mother and very caring of her baby,” the zoo said in a release. “The calf has been nursing and is growing quickly. Iris and her baby currently reside in a super cozy, hay-bedded enclosure that is off exhibit. This gives privacy to mom and baby while they bond. Soon, they will be moved into the indoor pool area that is visible to guests so the baby can start swimming.”
The Metro Richmond Zoo is currently Virginia’s sole place for people to see hippos. The pygmy hippo is listed as endangered on the IUCN Red List.
“With less than 2,500 mature individuals left in the wild, their survival in zoological parks is more certain than their survival in the wild,” the zoo said. “This birth plays an important role in helping protect this fascinating and rare species.”
volume up for tiny hippo honks 🔊
new tiny gal @metrorhmdzoo is C U T E pic.twitter.com/3t5BiiEYcF
— Kassidy Hammond (@KassidyBHammond) December 23, 2022
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