Kito the rhino celebrates 6th birthday

Kito the rhino celebrates 6th birthday

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - St. Patrick's Day may be one very special southern white rhino's favorite day, because it also coincides with his birthday.

Kito the rhino turned 6 years old Thursday, and the Memphis Zoo gave him a celebration to remember.

A birthday checklist with all the elements for his perfect party hung in the back of the enclosure he shares with his pal, 20-year-old Maggie.

His birthday to-do list included wallowing in the mud, playing in his sand pile, eating a yummy meal of alfalfa hay and grain, hanging out with Maggie, and knocking over the six cardboard leprechauns that dotted their enclosure.

Zookeeper Thomas Reid explained that Maggie and Kito love to play with the box towers by charging at them and knocking them over. It's a special treat they get only on certain occasions.

Mobile users, click here to see photos of Kito and Maggie celebrate Kito's birthday.

And Kito's sixth birthday certainly fits that bill. He's a whopping 4,200 pounds, but he's still growing and learning every step of the way.

"He's a young rhino," Reid said. "He's still trying to figure out everything. I mean, everything."

Though the pair wasn't particularly animated during Kito's birthday celebration, Reid explained that's more or less their normal disposition.

"They're very chill animals," Reid said. "They like eating, sleeping, wallowing in their mud. That's it."

But he did add that they're a spontaneous duo. Manager Amanda Schweighart confirmed that aspect about their personalities.

"They're so distinct," Schweighart said. "Kito's really goofy and Maggie can be a drama queen at times. She's Miss Diva."

Even though Kito didn't play much with his celebratory leprechauns, he did rush over to his good friend Tyranza, who lives right next door.

Tyranza, a 52-year-old African elephant, reached her long trunk over into Kito's enclosure as if to say, "Have a great day, bud!"

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