Premature Hippo Born 6 Weeks Early Is Getting Special Care And Enjoys Her First Pool Experience

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17-Year-Old Bibi the hippo gave birth to the first Nile hippo born at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden in 75 years. But the baby wasn’t supposed to be born until March, so she is under special care since she is so premature. The vet and nursery staff has been giving her critical care and is hand-feeding her since she is unable to stand to nurse from her mom.

The premature hippo weighs just 29 pounds, which is extremely below the average 50-120 pounds for this species. Once the hippo is strong enough and able to stand on her own, she will be reunited with her mother Bibi and her 35-year-old father, Henry. Watch the newborn hippo in the video below:

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While most hippos are born in the water, they can’t actually swim. But pool time for this little premie will help her build muscles and balance and maintain a body temperature at the correct 96-98 degrees. Watch her first water experience in the video below:

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Growing up, Ashley always had a passion for writing. After receiving her Bachelor's in Journalism from Stony Brook University, she now uses that passion to write about the thing she loves most in this world: animals! When she isn't writing, you can find her curled up on the couch with a kindle in her hands and her Guinea Pigs on her lap.