Unlikely Co-sojourners : 100 Year-old Tortoise acts as Mom to Baby Hippo

Here’s a heart-warming and very unusual story of a Hippo that lost his mum and found a co-sojourner and surrogate ‘mum’ in a 100 year-old tortoise!

A baby hippopotamus that survived the tsunami waves on the Kenyan coast has formed a strong bond with a giant male century-old tortoise in an animal facility in the port city of Mombassa , officials said The hippopotamus, nicknamed Owen and weighing about 300 kilograms (650 pounds), was swept down Sabaki River into the Indian Ocean, then forced back to shore when tsunami waves struck the Kenyan coast on December 26, before wildlife rangers rescued him.

It is incredible. A-less-than-a-year-old hippo has adopted a male tortoise, about a century old, and the tortoise seems to be very happy with being a ‘mother’,” ecologist Paula Kahumbu, who is in charge of Lafarge Park , told AFP.

After it was swept away and lost its mother, the hippo was traumatized. It had to look for something to be a surrogate mother. Fortunately , it landed on the tortoise and established a strong bond. They swim, eat and sleep together,” the ecologist added. “The hippo follows the tortoise exactly the way it followed its mother. somebody approaches the tortoise, the hippo becomes aggressive, as if protecting its biological mother,” Kahumbu added.

The hippo is a young baby, he was left at a very tender age and by nature, hippos are social animals that like to stay with their mothers for four years,” he explained.

Co-sojourners can come in the most unexpected ways and forms, and accompany us on a certain part of journey on the highway of life.

In this case, it seems that these two will be spending at least a good 4 years together 🙂

Hmmm, looks like now I have to rethink all my hippo and tortoise jokes

“Slow as a hippo!” (nah..)

“Slow as a tortoise! Except for that one that mothers a hippo!” (better, but quite a mouthful)

“What is the best way for a hippo to lose weight? Get a tortoise as a surrogate mother.” (erm…)

Mother to naughty Child : If you still don’t listen I’m gonna give you away to a tortoise!

Naughty Child (Celebrates) : Yippeee!! I get to play with the hippo too!

Talk about paradigm shift. Hopefully, we’ll get to see a lion mothering a lamb soon!

(By the way, I normally cite the source of the story but in this case I can’t seem to find the original source)



Filed under Co-sojourners, Family, Friends, Life, Must read!, News, Notes to You, Stories, Thoughts, Travel

4 responses to “Unlikely Co-sojourners : 100 Year-old Tortoise acts as Mom to Baby Hippo

  1. Awww I love the second last photo. So sweet!


  2. Pingback: Pages tagged "hippopotamus"

  3. Lovely, something really heartwarming..which just shows Love knows no boundaries..
    i thought this was really heartwarming too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OFMzzlU3Tts
    Lion and Human….

    Thanks Andy, will go check out the video :p

  4. aww… 🙂
    but lion mothering a lamb? *evil grin*

    hahaha… y not? heh

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