The arrival of Harry the hippo marks the first successful hippopotamus birth at Dublin Zoo.

Harry's mother Linda had previously given birth prematurely but none of her calves survived. Harry however was a sturdy six stone when he was born.

Keeper Joe Byrne explains that baby hippos are born in the water and can swim before they can walk. Baby Harry came out of the pool the second day after he was born and is very steady on his feet.

At the moment father Henry is being kept apart from his family. Female hippos are extremely protective of their young and will not let males near their babies. In turn male can become jealous so it will be at least six months before all three can run together. 

Joe Byrne thinks they have been lucky with Linda saying

Normally there’s no way you’d get this close to them, especially if there’s a calf is around, they would actually attack and kill you.

An RTÉ News report by Teresa Mannion broadcast on 15 September 1990.