Meet the Endangered Pygmy Hippo Who Loves to Swim

Obi is a recent addition to Melbourne Zoo, having been born 3 weeks ago to proud hippo parents Felix and Petre. He belongs to the endangered pygmy hippopotamus species, and belongs to a program that aims to try and restore their numbers in captivity. Obi, which translates as heart in the native Nigerian language, will therefore be partnered with a female to breed with in the years to come. In the meantime, Obi enjoys swimming around the pools of his home, something he will need plenty of practice at to grow big and strong. As manager Justin Valentine explains “He loves the water and spends hours in the small pool, so he is ready for the next step,” said sea manager Justin Valentine. But “he’s only little so about 10 to 15 minutes and he’s a bit tired and he has to take a break. And then he’s back into it right away,” he added. Pygmy hippos are endangered, although it’s difficult to know their exact numbers due to their dense rain-forest habitat.

More info: Melbourne Zoo | Facebook (h/t: abcnews)

Obi is the latest addition to Melbourne Zoo’s hippo family

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The cute pygmy hippo was born 3 weeks ago to mom Petre

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He’s been practicing swimming in a small pool

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His mother was always watching to make sure he stayed afloat

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“Obi” means “heart” in a Nigerian language

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“He loves the water and spends hours in the small pool, so he is ready for the next step”

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Last Thursday, Obi went for his first deep-water dip

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“He’s only little so about 10 to 15 minutes and he’s a bit tired and he has to take a break”

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Pygmy hippos are endangered, although it’s difficult to know their exact numbers

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