Owen and Mzee: The True Story of a Remarkable Friendship by Isabella HatkoffThe amazing true story of the orphaned baby hippo and 130-year-old giant turtle whose remarkable friendship touched millions around the world.
The inspiring true story of two great friends, a baby hippo named Owen and a 130-yr-old giant tortoise named Mzee (Mm-ZAY). When Owen was stranded after the Dec 2004 tsunami, villagers in Kenya worked tirelessly to rescue him. Then, to everyones amazement, the orphan hippo and the elderly tortoise adopted each other. Now they are inseparable, swimming, eating, and playing together. Adorable photos e-mailed from friend to friend quickly made them worldwide celebrities. Here is a joyous reminder that in times of trouble, friendship is stronger than the differences that too often pull us apart.
Owen & Mzee Story Time
The best of friends: Owen and Mzee
Snopes needs your help! Learn more. The hippopotamus, nicknamed Owen and weighing about kilograms, was swept down Sabaki River into the Indian Ocean, then forced back to shore when tsumani waves struck the Kenyan coast on Dec 26, before wildlife rangers rescued him. It had to look for something to be a surrogate mother. Fortunately, it landed on the tortoise and established a strong bond.
Owen and Mzee are a hippopotamus and an Aldabra giant tortoise , respectively, that became the subject of media attention after forming an unusual bond of friendship. They live in Haller Park , Bamburi , Kenya. Owen was separated from his herd as a juvenile following the December tsunami and was brought to the Haller Park rescue center. Having no other hippos to interact with, Owen immediately attempted to bond with Mzee Swahili for old man  , whose large domed shell and brown color resembled an adult hippo. Mzee was reluctant about Owen at first but grew to like him and got used to Owen around him.
The amazing true story of the orphaned baby hippo and year-old giant turtle whose remarkable friendship touched millions around the world.
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Updated February 20, Greste's photographs of baby hippopotamus Owen with a giant tortoise gave rise to a successful series of books. If you have inside knowledge of a topic in the news, contact the ABC. ABC teams share the story behind the story and insights into the making of digital, TV and radio content. Read about our editorial guiding principles and the standards ABC journalists and content makers follow. Learn more.