growing the family
Fiona the hippo — star resident of the Cincinnati Zoo, who became a global phenomenon when she was born prematurely back in 2017 — is officially a big sister!
Bibi, Fiona's mother, gave birth to the new calf Wednesday night. The baby "weighs at least twice as much as Fiona did and is already walking," Christina Gorsuch, director of animal care at the Cincinnati Zoo, said in a release, per The Associated Press.
"Bibi and the baby, yet to be named, will spend the next two weeks bonding behind the scenes," Gorsuch continued. "A female would take her newborn away from the bloat for about that amount of time in the wild, and we try to give Bibi the choice to do what feels natural to her."
Fiona first captured the hearts of social media users in 2017, when she was born six weeks early. At the time, she weighed only 29 pounds (25 pounds less than the lowest recorded weight for her species, People notes) and was unable to stand on her own. She now weighs a wondrous 2,000 pounds, per the zoo.