A baby pygmy hippo takes his first swim. Pshah, floaties.
Meet Obi, a super precious Pygmy hippo who was born at the Melbourne Zoo in Australia just three weeks ago. Pygmy hippos are classified as endangered, so Obi is a very special little newborn. As the name suggests, Pygmy hippos are smaller than standard hippos. Obi weighed only 11 pounds when he was born (aww!), and now he’s up to a healthy 28 pounds. As if his tiny size wasn’t already adorable enough, his name means “heart” in Igbo, a Nigerian language local to Australia. That might be just too sweet for our obis to handle.
Obi will grow to be 350-600 pounds when full-grown, but in the meantime, he’s enjoying being a baby. Here he is, going for a stroll with his mom, Petre.
On June 9, the zoo posted a video to its Facebook page of Obi “getting used to the water” by being showered with a water hose. We’re guessing that’s pretty much the hippo equivalent of playing in the sprinkler. Since then, Obi has been splashing around in the zoo’s nursery yard, learning to hippo-paddle.
According to Justin Valentine, Melbourne Zoo’s Wild Sea Manager, Obi “loves the water and spends hours in the small pool, so he is ready for the next step.”
Ready indeed. Last week, Obi debuted his mad swimming skills to the world. On Thursday, he went for his first public swim in the zoo’s “big pool.” Awww. He’s only three weeks old, and he’s already graduated from the baby pool! How adorable is that?
He didn’t even need floaties!
Like any good mom, Petre kept a close eye on her baby…
Since his birth last month, Obi has become quite the little social media darling. He pops up frequently on the Zoo’s Facebook page and Twitter account, doing things like going for a walk, rolling around in straw, taking a dip in the pool or just generally looking adorbs.
Take a peek at water-loving Obi in action…
(Video and all images via Zoos Victoria/Facebook.)