Hip Hip Hooray: Rare Baby Pygmy Hippo Is Too Cute for Words


Watch out, Fiona — there’s a new baby hippo on the scene, and she has totally stolen our hearts. Zookeepers at the Lowry Park Zoo in Tampa, Florida, welcomed a rare female pygmy hippo calf on December 1 — an early Christmas present. We’ve waited impatiently to learn baby girl’s name, and the zoo has finally revealed the holiday-themed moniker: Holly Berry!

Holly Berry, who is mother Zsa Zsa’s fourth baby and fourth girl, is now a hefty 35 pounds. The Lowry Park Zoo accepted name submissions earlier this month, and the winning name was written in by a man named Jordan Thurmond. To celebrate the hippo’s new name, the zoo partnered with The Hyppo, a gourmet ice pop company with several locations in the Tampa Bay area, and offered delicious watermelon, honeydew basil, and cantaloupe mint icy treats at the name-unveiling ceremony. Pygmy hippos apparently enjoy melon, and mother Zsa Zsa in particular loves this fruit.

What’s the reason for all the excitement (well, other than because Holly Berry is just so dang cute)? The pygmy hippopotamus is endangered, and this newborn calf is one of 32 pygmy hippos in the zoo’s Species Survival Program. “Pygmy hippos are elusive and extremely rare in the wild, with only a few thousand thought to be left in the world,” Chris Massaro, Lowry Park Zoo’s general curator said in a news release. “We’re one of only 13 zoos in the United States to care for this unique species, so this birth is especially important for us, and the entire Pygmy hippo population.”

So cute! Visit Holly Berry at the Ituri Forest located in the Safari Africa section of Lowry Park Zoo. Right now, they’re even running a special offer for active military, first responders and Florida residents.

Keep scrolling to see more cute photos of mom and baby.

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