Mérida, Yucatán — Pipa and Gorgo have a “marriage” like many others. Sometimes they get angry because they are very different in character, but love between them always leads to reconciliation … and cuddles.
After 12 years together, this pair of hippos at the Parque Zoológico del Centenario — the Centennial Zoo on Av. Itzaes and Calle 59 — can count seven pups. Four are still alive and have been taken to other zoos. In one case, their male offspring Hipoberto is at the Animaya Zoo, and is expected to soon start a family of his own.
Pipa, who comes from the Yumkás Zoo of Tabasco and has been at Centenario since 2003, did not have to wait long to meet the love of her life, because Gorgo arrived a year later, confiscated from a rogue circus.
Gorgo’s circus background makes him more gregarious; Pipa has a more sullen personality, says Odeisi Mora Camacho, the coordinator of the zoo’s technical department.
Gorgo recently gave a pleasant surprise to a team of veterinarians and animal wranglers. Remembering his old circus act, he began moving his head from side to side to the beat of mariachi music.
Pipa is now about 20 years old, and these days they are protecting her from further pregnancies for the sake of her health. She can live to about 50 in captivity with proper care and precautions, and officials believe that she deserves a break from motherhood.
Source: Diario de Yucatán