The staff at the Taronga Zoo in Sydney, Australia, is playing matchmaker for two pygmy hippopotamuses.
Keepers set up Fergus and Kambiri this week, in hopes the pair will mate later in the month. Both of the hippos were curious and polite during their first attempts at courtship, staying close to one another and exchanging what looked like several toothy smooches.
“It may look a bit like hippo kisses, but that’s how pygmy hippos interact and get to know one another. They interact with their noses and also show their strength and dominance with open mouth gesturing,” Taronga Zoo keeper Johny Wade said in a press release.
Sounds a little bit like human dating.
The Taronga Zoo is happy with how Fergus and Kambiri’s relationship has progressed so far.
“We didn’t see any aggressive behavior. They were playful and excited by the interactions, playing in the water together and having a little chase around on land,” Wade added.
The potential lovebirds will continue to have dates together, which will hopefully lead to a mating session. There are only 3,000 pygmy hippos left in the wild, so new arrivals are especially important.