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An Endangered Pygmy Hippo Calf Has Been Born At Colchester Zoo

An Endangered Pygmy Hippo Calf Has Been Born At Colchester Zoo

An absolutely adorable, but very endangered, pygmy hippo calf has been born at Colchester Zoo on May 9. Here's a short video of the little one in action:

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The small female calf, who doesn't have a name just yet, was conceived naturally by her mum Venus and her dad Freddie, and born a few weeks back after a six-month-long gestation period.

She's doing well so far, and is now adjusting to live in the zoo in Essex.

A spokesperson for the zoo said: "This youngster was conceived naturally by Venus and our male Freddie who are already an established breeding pair.

"This is fantastic news for the conservation of this species with the pygmy hippopotamus currently being listed as Endangered on the IUCN Red List."

Look at her. Credit: Colchester Zoo
Look at her. Credit: Colchester Zoo
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"Pygmy hippopotamus are solitary animals, meaning that they live alone until breeding season when they come together and part again.

"Venus and Freddie here at Colchester Zoo live separately as they would in the wild and are only introduced to one another when it is time to breed.

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"Any offspring will usually stay with their mother for the first few years of their life and so this new arrival will continue to stay with mum for some time, but as in the wild she will not be mixed with Freddie."

So, even though pygmy hippos can tip the scales at 300kg, which hardly sounds small, they are so-called because of how significantly smaller they are compared to other hippopotamuses.

Those regular ones can weigh as much as three tonnes, which - as you'll surely agree - is a lot.

The zoo's spokesperson said: "We will keep you updated on the little one's progress as she continues to explore, is named and goes for her first swim."

Aww, bless. Credit: Colchester Zoo
Aww, bless. Credit: Colchester Zoo

Can't wait, let's hope they've got a video camera at the ready for that, because this hippo is cute.

The zoo's website added: "The little one is doing well and has been happily running along after mum since its arrival! The Animal Care Team have since weighed the youngster to check it is growing healthy and strong and have also been able to confirm dad, Freddie & mum, Venus have a daughter!"

The term hippopotamus, in case you've ever wondered, comes from the Greek word for 'river horse'.

Not sure they'd ever seen a horse if they think a hippo looks like that, but whatever.

One thing is for sure, they do at least spend quite a lot of their time in the water.

Featured Image Credit: Colchester Zoo

Topics: UK News, Interesting, Animals

Tom Wood

Tom Wood is a LADbible journalist and Twin Peaks enthusiast. Despite having a career in football cut short by a chronic lack of talent, he managed to obtain degrees from both the University of London and Salford. According to his French teacher, at the weekends he mostly likes to play football and go to the park with his brother. Contact Tom on [email protected]