Cincinnati Zoo: Premature hippo begins to support weight

Cincinnati Premature Hippo
In this photo provided by the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden a zoo employee swaddles a female Nile hippopotamus calf born on Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017 (Michelle Curley/Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden via AP)

CINCINNATI (AP) — The Cincinnati Zoo says a prematurely born baby hippo is making progress toward standing on her own.

The zoo says the calf born early Tuesday is starting to support her weight for a few seconds at a time.

Zoo spokeswoman Michelle Curley said Saturday the hippo has gained almost 4 pounds since birth but is still about 20 pounds under the low end of a normal birth weight of 55 to 120 pounds for a Nile hippo.

Curley says the hippo continues to receive 24-hour-a-day care including exercises to help strengthen her muscles.

The zoo says 17-year-old Bibi gave birth six weeks early to the first Nile hippo born there in 75 years.