Odd Side – January 15, 2019

Cincinnati Zoo’s Premature Hippo Fiona Hits Big Milestone

CINCINNATI (AP) – The Cincinnati Zoo is celebrating another milestone for its famous premature baby hippo.

The zoo said Wednesday that Fiona has hit 1,000 pounds (454 kilograms).

The zoo acknowledges reaching that weight mark is more of a sentimental milestone since full-grown female hippos weigh about three times that. Senior keeper Jenna Wingate tells WVXU that it’s “a big deal” because the zoo didn’t know whether she would survive at birth.

Born nearly two months early in January 2017, she was 29 pounds (13 kilograms). That’s about a third the size of a typical full-term Nile hippo. She also was unable to stand or nurse.

A zoo staffer milked her mother Bibi, and Smithsonian’s National Zoo helped develop a special formula. Nurses from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital put in a hippo IV.

A Moose Walks Into an Alaska Hospital and Finds a Snack

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A moose wandered into a hospital building in Alaska’s largest city and chowed down on some plants in the lobby as workers watched the massive animal in awe.

When a patient mentioned that security staffers were monitoring a moose that got inside the Anchorage building Monday, Stephanie Hupton dashed out and started recording.

“Didn’t think we’d have a pet moose,” said Hupton, who works in billing at a physical therapy office inside a building attached to Alaska Regional Hospital.

The footage shows the moose browsing around some greenery near an entrance before it stands gazing at the camera’s direction. It briefly lingers before sauntering out through an open door.

Hupton said she never felt threatened by the mellow creature. It was an experience she never expected when she moved to Anchorage three years ago from Carroll, Iowa.

“It’s definitely different than small-town Iowa,” she said.

The moose got inside through doors that were stuck open because of extreme cold in Anchorage, where temperatures hovered around zero Monday, hospital spokeswoman Kjerstin Lastufka said.

The plants in the warm lobby were likely inviting to the animal, who ate some of them before leaving after about 10 minutes, Lastufka said.

The moose caused no injuries or any big problems, other than the snacking.

“It was a pretty calm visit,” Lastufka said.

Stolen Purple Penguin Statue Returned to Hotel Museum

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – A large purple penguin statue that was swiped from a hotel in Oklahoma City apparently managed to waddle back home after police released surveillance camera images of a man with the $3,000 piece of art tucked under his arm.

Oklahoma City police on Friday announced that the statue, which disappeared Sunday night from the 21c Museum Hotel, had been “returned home.”

No arrests have been announced.

Hotel staff speculated that it was stolen by someone visiting a guest. Surveillance images show a man carrying the artwork by its head. The penguin is about two-thirds the height of the statue thief.

A spokeswoman for the hotel said she was “thrilled the penguin has been returned to our flock.”