Eliot Mahlase
1 minute read
20 Mar 2019
2:42 pm

Pretoria Zoo explains ‘dirty green water’ in Hippo enclosure

Eliot Mahlase

The zoo says the layer of green slime is not as dangerous as it looks.

Green plants seen in the water are called duckweed and are not harmful to animals according to National zoological gardens. Picture: Facebook.

Pretoria Zoo has dispelled fears of hippos being harmed by the “dirty green water” recently seen in their enclosure, Pretoria East Rekord.

This comes after a group of people posted what looked like a green layer floating in the water where the hippos live at the zoo.

National zoological gardens spokesperson Angeline Schwan, however, said the green plants seen in the water was duckweed which was not harmful to the animals.

“The green colour shown on the pictures is duckweed and is not detrimental to the welfare of the hippos. Also, remember that hippos urinate and defecate in their water. This high bio-load accelerates the growth of the duckweed which acts as a natural bio-filter,” she said.

Schwan also said the duckweed was caused by a blocked drain.

“Last week, we dealt with a blocked drain that usually drains out some of the duck-weed during our normal cleaning operations. This matter has been resolved.”

Duckweed is a type of flowering aquatic plant which floats on or just beneath the surface of fresh water and wetlands.

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