A Premature Baby Hippo Enjoys A Yummy Bottle Of Milk While Sitting In Warm Bath

A Premature Baby Hippo Enjoys A Yummy Bottle Of Milk While Sitting In Warm Bath – 

A sweet baby hippo named Fiona enjoyed a yummy bottle of milk while sitting in a warm bath at the Cincinnati Zoo . Fiona was born six-weeks premature to mom Bibi and is being given 24-hour care in order to make sure that she is strong enough to rejoin her mother. Fiona appears to be catching on very quickly however as she’s learning to stand, swim and even blow bubbles.

The calf 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, seventeen-year-old Bibi. She is being cared for in close proximity to mom and dad, Henry, so they can hear and smell each other. She still has a long way to go before she’ll be strong enough to be reunited with her mom …She needs to learn how to nurse on her own, walk, swim and get a lot bigger.

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The premature baby hippo is getting stronger thanks, in part, to nutrients she’s receiving from her mother’s milk. Because Bibi was conditioned to lean in and remain still for weekly ultrasounds throughout her pregnancy, she is comfortable walking into a chute and allowing milk to be collected. The calf’s care team, which includes vets, nursery and animal staff, give her mom’s milk first and supplement with formula prepared by the Zoo’s nutritionist. Some of Bibi’s milk will be saved, analyzed and added to the Smithsonian’s Milk Repository. Milk nutrient content changes over time. “Since we are able to get daily samples of Bibi’s millk, we have a rare opportunity to learn more about specific changes in this species,” said Zoo nutritionist Barbara Henry. #cincinnatizoo #cincinnati #closeenoughtocare #hippo #TeamFiona

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