Friday, September 25, 2009

Celebrating Hippo’s 43rd Birthday!

Photo Courtesy of Thairath

BANGKOK – The minister of Environmental Resources, Mr. Suwit Khunkitti, attended Kao Din Zoo today to celebrate the birthday of Mae Mali (Mae meaning Mother, Mali meaning Jasmine), a 43-year-old hippopotamus. A giant birthday cake was placed near the hippo enclosure for Mae Mali to enjoy. People with the name Mali were also allowed free day-passes to the zoo.

Mr. Khunkitti was the acting president for the widely publicized event, ‘Happy 43rd
Birthday Hippo Mae Mali.’ The hippo is widely known zoo-star and a popular attraction for children and families. Mali was originally brought to Thailand from the Netherlands and has been at Kao Din Zoo for a long time; long enough at least to have given birth to 15 young hippos.

Mae Mali also has another pet name called, ‘grandma hippopotamus’.

The average life expectancy of a hippo is around 40 years. Mr. Khunkitti emphasized the great care the zoo has taken to look after Mali, ensuring her good health even in old age. Her birthday cake was made from various fruits and vegetables and Mali was allowed eat all she wanted.

Students from schools, and fans of Mali were invited to the celebration. Mr. Khunkitti led the birthday tune and the children followed him. Mae Mali seemed to enjoy the gigantic cake as well. Wasn’t it just a great day?!

Courtesy of Thairath

Writer: Adrian Tse & Chet Chetchotisak