Happy 2nd Birthday, Fiona the Hippo! This Former Preemie Is Now a 1,000-lb. Toddler
Fiona the hippo is now in her terrible twos, though she continues to be nothing but terrific.
On Jan. 24, 2017, Fiona was born two months premature and weighed one-fifth of what a normal newborn hippo should. She was tiny, but she was a fighter. Fiona pushed back against the terrifying odds, beating out initial heath concerns and growing into the strong, healthy, adorable animal she is today.
In fact, the formerly small hippo recently hit the 1,000-lb. mark.
“Fiona is remarkable for being unremarkable now,” Cincinnati Zoo curator of mammals Christina Gorsuch said in a statement. “She’s just like most other 2-year-old hippos, except for the fact that she’s a celebrity in Cincinnati and beyond!”
It’s true: Fiona’s cheery demeanor and sweet face have won her fans all across the world — and plenty of merchandise partnerships.
To celebrate the celebrity hippo’s 2nd birthday, the zookeeper at her home, the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens, threw her a party complete with a towering ice cake.
While Fiona is far from the little baby that first captured hearts two years ago, her keepers and friends don’t expect Fiona fanaticism to slow down anytime soon.
“The enthusiasm and loyalty that Fiona fans have for her is like nothing I’ve ever seen,” Cincinnati Zoo director Thane Maynard said in a statement. “The positive energy is contagious! Some of her super fans gather at Hippo Cove almost every day to enjoy the company of other Fiona enthusiasts and catch a glimpse of her.”