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Cincinnati Zoo welcomes baby hippo

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Posted at 1:37 PM, Aug 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-04 13:39:33-04

CINCINNATI, Ohio (WCPO) — There's a new baby hippo at the Cincinnati Zoo.

Wednesday night around 10 p.m. Bibi gave birth to a healthy full-term hippo, the zoo said in a press release. The newborn's gender has not been revealed.

Zoo officials said the new baby looks huge compared to Bibbi's other hippo, Fiona.

"Fiona only weighed 29 pounds when she was born six weeks premature and wasn't able to stand on her own," said Christina Gorsuch, director of animal care at the Cincinnati Zoo.

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The Cincinnati Zoo's Bibi gave birth to a healthy hippo calf late Wednesday night.

“Bibi and the baby, yet to be named, will spend the next two weeks bonding behind the scenes,” said Gorsuch. “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.”

Zoo officials said earlier in the week that Bibi had begun showing signs of restlessness and a desire to spend more time indoors, which are indications that she was close to giving birth.

Watch Bibi with her newborn hippo just hours after birth:

Footage of the Cincinnati Zoo's Bibi with her new baby hippo hours after birth

The baby's estimated due date was Aug. 15, but caretakers said a hippo's birth window could be 30 days before or after that estimation.

Zoo officials said Bibi and her newborn will be kept separated from 5-year-old Fiona and 19-year-old Tucker so that mom and baby have plenty of time to bond.

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The Cincinnati Zoo's Bibi was due Aug. 15.

While mom and baby hippo will not be in public view, members have access to live cams in the outdoor habitat and can watch all the action at Hippo Cove from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. every day.

This story was originally reported by Christian LeDuc on wcpo.com.