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Cincinnati Zoo Has Sold Nearly Half a Million Dollars in Fiona the Hippo Merchandise

Inside Edition Staff, Inside Edition Staff -

Fiona the hippo is many things: Cute, photogenic, fun-loving and beloved among her most obvious characteristics.

And, according to a recent report, she's also a serious money machine.

The miracle baby Nile hippo, whose birth made headlines when she was born six weeks premature, has become a phenomenon at the Cincinnati Zoo, reportedly to the tune of nearly half a million dollars.

The Cincinnati Enquirer estimates that merchandise inspired by the little hippo that could has returned nearly half a million dollars to the Cincinnati Zoo.

It's a milestone for the zoo, America's second oldest, and one that comes just as Fiona marks her first birthday.

On January, 27 2017, Fiona was born weighing 29 pounds, or just half the normal birth weight of a hippo.

As Fiona defied the odds and grow strong, she quickly became an internet darling as fans found themselves unable to look away from the bouncing baby hippo who just seemed to adore the camera.

Every little new adventure for Fiona seemed to become a viral sensation as her keepers documented her remarkable growth.

Viewers couldn't get enough of her first swims, bubble playtime, her naps, her photobombs and even her bodily functions.

By August, the hippo even started appearing in her own Facebook series, The Fiona Show. 

To celebrate a year of this incredible hippo, the Cincinnati Zoo is throwing her a party on Jan. 20, complete with fun and games for both Fiona and her young fans, "birthday enrichment" for Fiona and a chance for visitors to sign Fiona's very own birthday card.

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