The Cincinnati Zoo's adorable baby hippo finally has a name

Posted at 11:50 AM, Jan 31, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-01 06:57:33-05

CINCINNATI – The Cincinnati Zoo's widely-adored premature baby hippo has a name, and it's just as cute as you'd imagine. 

The week-old hippo calf's name is Fiona, which means "fair."

The baby hippo had been steadily gaining weight, but did not gain any weight Sunday, the zoo also said. However, they added that it is not uncommon for premature babies to have difficulty with digestion and regulating their metabolism.

“Even though Fiona’s not out of the woods yet, every baby needs a name and her animal care team thought the name was a perfect fit for their “fair” little girl,” said zoo curator of mammals Christina Gorsuch. “They have been with her 24 hours a day and think this name suits her personality.”

Fiona arrived six weeks earlier than her expected March due date and has been receiving critical care from zoo staff since vets determined that she was too weak to stand to nurse from mom, Bibi.

She is being cared for in close proximity to mom and dad, Henry, so they can hear and smell each other, zoo officials said. 

“She still has a long way to go before she’ll be strong enough to be reunited with her mom,” Gorsuch said. “She needs to learn how to nurse on her own, walk, swim and get a lot bigger.”

Fiona weighed 29 pounds when she was born, which is about 25 pounds lighter than the lowest recorded birth weight for this species. The normal range is 55-120 pounds.


Click here to view a gallery of the baby hippo.