An African hippopotamus appears to be making himself at home in a Veracruz lagoon, showing signs of settling down and even engaging in a tryst with a local farmer’s calf.
Nicknamed Tyzon by residents of Las Choapas, the 600-kilogram hippo had been sighted in lagoons across the state but has now taken up residence here, becoming something of a popular mascot in the community.
Residents say the hippo is timid and heads for the water when vehicles approach, but environmental authorities believe he could be a threat and are now considering how they might capture and move the animal to an ecological reserve in Orizaba.
Some locals — who have even created a Facebook page for Tyzon — would prefer the animal remain and be named the official mascot of Las Choapas, a municipality in the southeastern corner of the state.
The environmental protection agency Profepa said hippos can be aggressive and pose a danger to the public and native species.
Where Tyzon came from remains a mystery.