July 17, 2005

The Baby Hippo

Last January after the Asian tsunami, a strange, but heartwarming story came out of Kenya. A baby hippo had been found lost and alone on a reef after the waves from the Tsunami reached the Kenyan shore. He was rescued and taken to a sanctuary where he adopted an old tortoise as his surrogate mom.

Hippo & TortoiseToday, NPR had an update on the story from Dr Paula Kahumbu, the general manager of LaFarge Ecosystems which runs the Haller Park sanctuary in Mombasa, Kenya. The baby hippo, Owen, and his friend, the 130-year old tortoise, Mzee, are doing fine. Owen is about to be introduced to another hippo, Cleo, a 13-year old hippo who will help him figure out how to be a hippo. But instead of separating Owen and Mzee, the idea is to expand the family and let Owen have both worlds.

Dr. Kahumbu has a piece on how Owen came to be at Haller Park here.

You can keep up with this remarkable story on Owen's care-taker's blog.

Also, a children's book has been written about Owen and Mzee which you can download here.

Fortunately, this update came just when I was needing a story to renew my optimism about our future.

Posted by Mary at July 17, 2005 06:56 PM | Miscellaneous | TrackBack(1) | Technorati links |

And Rick Santorum will be screaming from the floor of the Senate how this is another example of the breaking down of the traditional family. Hippos and turtles living together! The horror!

Posted by: Scott at July 18, 2005 04:54 AM

Ok, that posted a lot. Comments are screwy this morning.

Posted by: Scott at July 18, 2005 04:57 AM

Not to worry, Scott. The hippo and the tortoise are both completely hetero, so Santorum is down with the idea (checked with his office this morning).

Posted by: Pete (Alois) at July 18, 2005 07:17 AM

Hey y'all--

Check the link to the caretaker's blog you referenced above... you need to chop the "index.php" off the end of the hyperlink for it to work:


Just sayin'.

Posted by: Pete (Alois) at July 18, 2005 03:03 PM