Zoo Welcomes Endangered Baby Pygmy Hippo

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There’s a new member of the Pittsburgh Zoo family – an adorable baby pygmy hippopotamus named Hadari.

The 1-year-old baby boy was moved in on May 23, the zoo announced on Wednesday, coming from Alabama’s Montgomery Zoo. And he’s already making himself at home in the zoo’s Jungle Odyssey area.

Hadari is trying out everything, every which way,” the zoo’s curator of mammals Kelsey Forbes said. “He is super rambunctious, loves exploring, and is a confident hippo.”


In a press release, the Pittsburgh Zoo said that Hadari seems to be enjoying his time so far and that they are making sure to give him his favorite foods – green beans, cooked carrots and oranges.

Pygmy hippos are considered endangered according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, which monitors species around the world. In the wild, pygmy hippos are found in just four countries in West Africa, according to the IUCN. These animals, along with their relatives, the common hippopotamus, “face significant threats,” including logging which reduces their habitats and ability to hunt.

There are only a couple thousand of the animals left in the wild, according to the most recent estimates.

Hadari was born at the Alabama zoo as part of the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Species Survival Plan, which aims to help increase species populations. His birth is also a major achievement, as only 41% of all pygmy hippos born in zoos have been male, the Pittsburgh Zoo said.


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