KALININGRAD, July 24 (RIA Novosti) – A zoo in the western Russian city of Kaliningrad is mourning the death of Mary, Europe’s oldest hippopotamus, who has died at the age of 56, a zoo spokesman said Wednesday.
“Mary, the zoo’s oldest resident, has died of natural causes,” the spokesman said, adding that Mary was the mother of 25 calves.
Mary moved to the Kaliningrad zoo from Hamburg in June 1969 and was the zoo’s mascot for 44 years.
Hippopotamuses have been popular zoo animals since the mid-19th century. Their average life span is some 40 years in the wild and 50 years in captivity.