‘Kambiri’, our Pygmy Hippo calf, is an absolute water baby. She spends most of her day bobbing up and down in her waterhole with Mum, ‘Petre’, only coming out when it’s time to eat. At a healthy 50 kilograms, eating is her second favourite pastime!
At approximately seven months of age, Kambiri is becoming miss independent, refusing to get out of the moat when it’s time to head into her night den. She definitely has a stubborn streak, ignoring her mother and cheekily swimming away when Petre wants her to come inside.
In the wild at this age Kambiri would be starting to venture out and forage with Mum, learning which foods are good to eat and which ones aren’t. In West Africa, where Pygmy Hippos are found in the wild, there are many plants that have dangerous toxins in them so it’s important for Pygmy Hippo calves to learn what is okay to eat from their experienced mothers.
At seven months old, Kambiri is still very close to Mum and will continue to be until she is around 12 to 18 months of age when she will be fully weaned and by all accounts a very confident and curious young female.