Walt Disney World Resort has announced that Disney's Animal Kingdom welcomed a baby Nile hippopotamus born at the park on Jan. 13.
Park officials say that roughly a dozen guests were able to experience a magical moment at the park's Kilimanjaro Safaris attraction, as they were the first to learn that the hippo calf is a male named Augustus.
Augustus, weighing in at about 168 pounds, is the first hippo born at the park in 13 years. Park officials say that he is often seen staying close to his mom, Tuma, and is already winning guests over with his playful nature.
Walt Disney World Resorts says that the birth of Augustus marks another success for the dedicated and highly trained team of animal care experts at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
Nile Hippos are a vulnerable species with a declining population, so this is an important contribution to the worldwide conservation and understanding of these amazing creatures.
Augustus’ parents, Tuma and Henry, were reportedly chosen to breed through the Species Survival Plan (SSP), which is overseen by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). The SSP ensures responsible breeding so there will be healthy and diverse animal populations for years to come.