Baby hippo takes first wobbly steps at Cincinnati Zoo

By Brooks Hays

Feb. 5 (UPI) -- Fiona, a baby hippo born prematurely last week at the Cincinnati Zoo, took her first steps, zoo caretakers announced Sunday.

The zoo released a video showcasing the baby hippo's wobbly feat.


"Fiona was active during the night and consumed a good amount of formula on her own," zoo spokeswoman Michelle Curley said in a statement. "Keep the positive vibes coming!"

The hippo was born six weeks early, weighing just 29 pounds. Baby hippos typically weigh between 60 and 150 pounds when born.

Zookeepers spent the last several days cuddling with Fiona while monitoring her vital signs. Because she showed a weak suckling response, zookeepers at the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden were forced to deliver milk via a feeding tube.

Fiona is being kept and cared for in close proximity to her mom and dad. Last week, the baby hippo took her first bath.

"Most hippos are born in the water, but they can't actually swim," the zoo said. "Pool time will help her build muscles and balance and maintain an optimal body temperature of 96-98 degrees."

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