Pygmy Hippos Found in Liberia

Rare mammal not wiped out by wars, deforestation
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 10, 2008 10:27 AM CDT
Zoo keeper Paul Kybett cleans Nicky the Pygmy hippopotamuses' teeth with a new giant (5ft) toothbrush at London Zoo on July 20, 2006 in London England. (Photo by Claire Greenway/Getty Images)   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Rare pygmy hippos have been videotaped in the forests of Liberia, proving to a team of zoologists that the rare and elusive mammal has survived through two civil wars, illegal logging, and poaching thought to have wiped it out. Less than 3,000 pygmy hippos, which look like normal hippos only smaller, still live in their natural habitat, the BBC reports.

Despite the find, the zoologist team is still worried about the little critters. Bush hunters still stalk them, and deforestation is a major problem; just 10% of their original forest is left. But even so, the secretive creatures usually find places to hide. They are rarely seen, and managed to evade hordes of hungry people displaced in Liberia’s wars.