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Posted: May 31, 2017

Fiona the baby hippo to make media appearance at Cincinnati Zoo


By Dayton Daily News

CINCINNATI —

Four months after she was prematurely born, the media will be able to watch Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden’s Fiona the baby hippo in her outside habitat and pool, according to WCPO.

>> Fiona goes for a swim, internet goes crazy

The Cincinnati-based television station reports that Fiona, along with swimmers, will explore the Hippo Cove exhibit after the zoo closes.

>> Fiona the hippo turns 3 months old

Until now, the zoo has guarded Fiona’s access because of her weakened immune system and safety concerns. 

>> Read more trending news

Members of the media will be able to shoot photos and videos of the baby hippo during a time when keepers report that they have heard occasional vocalizations from Fiona, including grunts around meal time.


Related

Staff Report

Fiona the hippo turns 3 months old

Staff Report

Fiona the hippo turns 3 months old

In this April 12 photo provided by the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens, Fiona a prematurely born hippopotamus, swims in her quarantine enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens in Cincinnati. (Courtesy Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens via AP)

Fiona goes for a swim, internet goes crazy

On Friday, the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden shared a video of Fiona, the premature hippo that was born at the zoo earlier this year, taking a swim, and the internet couldn’t have been more excited.

>> Read more trending news

Fiona has become quite the online sensation over the past several months, with fans from all over the world closely following her journey.

Her care team said hopefully this June zoo visitors will be able to catch a glimpse of Fiona swimming and splashing in the hippo pool.

Fiona the hippo turns 3 months old

Fiona — the world’s favorite prematurely born hippopotamus — turned 3 months old Monday.

>> Read more trending news

The early days of cuddling the tiny, fragile hippo are long gone, Jenna Wingate, the Cincinnati Zoo’s Africa keeper, told our media partner WCPO.

Here are three updates about Fiona that Wingate shared with WCPO:

1. The ‘dung shower’: Apparently, male hippopotamuses mark territory by slinging feces around with their tails in what Wingate called a “dung shower.”

Fiona has taken an interest in the action exhibited by her father, Henry, whom zookeepers have introduced her to, along with her mother, Bibi.

“Fiona is now getting access to that, and she shows quite an interest in it for whatever reason,” Wingate said.

>> MORE: Premature hippo a happy hit for zoo after gorilla death

2. One sassy toddler: Fiona eats about 2 liters of formula five times a day. Zookeepers introduced grain to her diet this weekend and started training her to associate feeding time with a clicker that they can use when she weighs 600 pounds and is too dangerous to approach.

“She’s very sassy. She’s very feisty. If she doesn’t want to do something, you’re not going to make her,” Wingate said. “We kind of act like she’s a toddler, and if she doesn’t want to come, we’re, like, ‘Bye, Fiona!’ We’ll pretend we’re walking away and she’ll be, like, ‘Wait, I want to be with you guys!’ and then she’ll come with us. She has her very big, very own personality already.”

3. Too big to snuggle: “There’s a big difference just in her energy and she’s much stronger and healthier now, so there was a lot of worry and she would kind of lie there and wouldn’t do a whole lot,” Wingate said. “She’s too big and a little bit dangerous to actually cuddle and snuggle, but she does like to lie on our feet or use our leg as a pillow now.”

Premature baby hippo Fiona packing on pounds, weighing in at 116 pounds 

Fiona, the baby hippo born six-weeks early at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens in January and 25 pounds underweight, is making great progress and gaining weight, tipping the scales at 116 pounds Wednesday morning.

>> Read more trending news

The zoo is preparing to gradually introduce 2-month-old Fiona to her parents as she gets a little bigger. She caught a glimpse of her parents in their outdoor habitat this week, and can now hear and smell them.

“She isn’t quite ready to venture out herself, but is getting familiar with the look and smell of the great outdoors,” the zoo said on its website.

Fiona could weigh as much as 3,500 pounds one day, the average weight of an adult Nile hippo, which is so strong it can crush a crocodile with its jaws and sharp teeth, according to the zoo.

The hippo was born on Jan. 24 and was the first Nile hippo born at the Cincinnati Zoo in 75 years.

 


            Premature hippo gets bigger bottle

Associated Press

Premature hippo gets bigger bottle

A hippopotamus born premature is well on the way to good health, steadily gaining weight and graduating to a large feeding bottle, according to the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden.

Fiona, is now 68 pounds, up from her birth weight of 29 pounds. She was born six weeks premature Jan. 24 and has needed around-the-clock care ever since.

>> Read more trending stories

“She’s got a long way to go before she reaches her adult weight of approximately 3,000 pounds,” the zoo said in a statement. “But her care staff loves the progress she’s making.”

Fiona has graduated to a big girl bottle and has a big girl appetite to match! Check out her milk mustache.#teamfiona #fionafix pic.twitter.com/2RYTDydNPJ— Cincinnati Zoo (@CincinnatiZoo) March 1, 2017

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