The Greensboro Science Center is celebrating the arrival of a rare pygmy hippo. 

The calf was born on May 24 to parents Holly and Ralph, who had been recommended for inclusion in the Greensboro Science Center’s breeding program. It’s the first pygmy hippo born at the center.

One official called the arrival a “monumental milestone.”

According to a news release, there are just ten breeding pairs of pygmy hippos in Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ institutions.

Pygmy hippos are native to West Africa and are considered endangered, with less than 2,500 adults estimated to remain in the wild. While the common adult river hippo can weigh up to two tons, the diminutive pygmy hippos top out at about 600 pounds.

The as-yet-unnamed calf is said to be doing well, with Holly proving to be “a very vigilant and caring mother.”

The pygmy hippo family will reside in Revolution Ridge, the science center’s 12-acre space devoted to raising awareness about endangered species.  

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