Video: Baby Hippo Goes For A Swim At The San Diego Zoo
Devi, a hippo calf born eight weeks ago at the San Diego Zoo, went for a dip—one of her first public appearances since her birth.Devi made one of her first public appearances on Thursday, swimming around in the 150,000 gallon pool in her habitat, KTLA reports. Devi was born to mother Funani and father Otis on March 23.
Hippos are semiaquatic, and are able to see underwater due to a protective membrane over their eyes, so Devi can see visitors. Hippos close their nostrils when they go underwater, and usually need to come up for air every three to five minutes—though a young hippo like Devi will need to come up every two to three minutes. This is something hippos do automatically, even while asleep. Despite all of this, hippos actually aren't that great at swimming because they are so dense, so they move by pushing off against the riverbed.
Hippos are considered a vulnerable species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) as they've been illegally hunted by humans for their meat and the ivory in their canine teeth. They are still often found in sub-Saharan Africa.
Visitors can see Funani and Devi on Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, according to the zoo's website.