CINCINNATI — Thursday the world got one of its first glimpses of Fiona's little brother, Fritz, exploring the hippo cove habitat with his mom Bibi at the Cincinnati Zoo.
Fritz's first time exploring the habitat was Tuesday.
“The habitat introduction went pretty much as we hoped it would,” said Cincinnati Zoo’s director of animal care Christina Gorsuch. “Bibi, followed closely by Fritz, came out right away and walked into the pool. She showed great maternal instincts and used her body to block Fritz from spending too much time in deep water. He went under to nurse and explore a little but stayed right by mom.”
Thursday's media introduction was somewhat of a dress rehearsal. The public still hasn't had the opportunity to see Fritz live in action but he is taking baby steps and will be in Hippo Cove while it's open to the public starting Friday.
“Once we’re confident that he and Bibi are comfortable in all corners of that space, visitors will get a chance to see them," said Gorsuch.
For now, fans of the new baby can watch all the action happening at Hippo Cove live from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Here are two videos of Fritz wiggling around and being cute in Hippo Cove:
Wednesday, the zoo took to Twitter to celebrate Fritz's two week birthday by posting an adorable video. He's already more than 100 pounds.
Fritz is 2 weeks old today! He did more outdoor exploring and swimming with Bibi. Hippo Cove may be closed at times for introductions. Thank you for your patience as Fritz gets settled in. pic.twitter.com/pxjYAzT0a0
— Cincinnati Zoo (@CincinnatiZoo) August 17, 2022
At birth, zoo officials said Fritz looked huge compared to its first baby hippo star, Fiona.
"Fiona only weighed 29 pounds when she was born six weeks premature and wasn't able to stand on her own," said Gorsuch.
Fritz estimated due date was set for Aug. 15, but caretakers said a hippo's birth window could be 30 days before or after that estimation
Earlier this month, hippo keepers shared this adorable video of Bibi and her new calf and said "It looks like Fiona's world-famous ear wiggles run in the family."
For his first few weeks of life, he didn't have a name. The Zoo received more than 90,000 submissions and narrowed the choices down to two: Fritz or Ferguson.
People had the chance to weigh in on their favorite of the two and according to the zoo, more than 56% of voters chose Fritz.
It's a boy! New Cincinnati Zoo's hippo gender revealed
Fritz vs Ferguson: Cincinnati Zoo narrows down name for Fiona's little brother
Fiona, Bibi hit it off with new hippo at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden