Featured Image Credit: Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
By Jessica Kittel
Get ready for what is quite possibly the cutest video you will ever see! Fiona is a Nile hippo calf who lives at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Gardens in Cincinnati, OH. Fiona’s life began on January 24th of this year.
However, when she was born, she was actually six weeks premature and exceptionally small. Although weighing 29 pounds might seem like a big baby to humans, hippo calves normally range from 55 to 120 pounds when born. At 29 pounds, Fiona was 25 pounds lighter than the lowest weight on record for a Nile hippo at birth.
Luckily, despite her small size, she was already very well developed by the time she was born. She received intensive veterinary care 24/7 until she reached a healthy weight.
Nowadays, she’s being all cute and stuff! The rambunctious six-month-old is a far cry from her underweight, newborn self, albeit still exceptionally adorable. At a whopping 300 pounds, she’s fit as a fiddle and is beginning the process of acclimatizing to people.
In the recently released video, we get to witness Fiona’s first experience with SCUBA divers. So far, she’s lived exclusively in the facility’s indoor pools. However, zoo personnel soon hope to start getting her to spend more time in the outdoor pools. These SCUBA divers will be there to help her through the transition. As far as jobs go, getting to play with baby hippos while SCUBA diving doesn’t sound too horrible.