(Memphis) Julie, he eldest hippo a the Memphis Zoo has died.
According to the zoo, “Julie” the hippopotamus died March 16 at the age of 51 after her health began to dramatically decline earlier this month.”
After being put into hospice care at the zoo, keepers decided it was in her best interest to euthanize “Julie” to minimize pain and suffering.
Julie was born at the Memphis Zoo in 1961 and spent her entire life there as well as giving birth to ten hippos.
In 1988 “Julie” received national attention for giving birth to twins “Splish” and “Splash.”
The family later appeared on the cover of LIFE magazine.
According to the zoo, “Julie is preceded in death by her mate, “Ubei,” who died of problems related to arthritis in 1995. He was 41, and was the father of all her calves. Julie and Splish come from a Memphis hippo lineage dating all the way back to 1914.”
“During my zoo career I’ve had the fortune to work with four hippos,” said Herb Roberts, Memphis Zoo Curator. “Julie by far had the best temperament. She was calm, reliable and easy to work with. She enjoyed spending time with her keepers as well as her daughter Splish. I think she considered them all part of her herd. I know she was part of my herd, and I will miss her greatly.”
Learn more from the zoo: http://memphiszoo.org/Default.aspx?p=63833&naid=13205