Here’s what the top bidder named the Franklin Park Zoo hippo, what they paid — and what you thought the name should be

Plus, now you can name a gorilla.

Meet "Ptolemy." Franklin Park Zoo

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It’s the moment hippopotamus fans throughout the commonwealth have been waiting for: The results of the Franklin Park Zoo hippo-naming auction are in, and the pygmy hippopotamus born there Oct. 5 finally knows who he is.

First off, though, we should mention that the winning bid topped out at a whopping $40,600 (not a typo). The donor wanted to remain anonymous, probably to avoid being hit up by relatives looking for handouts. But the winner picked a good name regardless: “Ptolemy,” after the youngest son of Cleopatra. Who knows, maybe there will be a part for little Ptolemy in the upcoming movie starring Gal Gadot.


All proceeds — the $40,600, along with an additional $2,500 of donations in Ptolemy’s honor — will benefit Zoo New England’s All for Our Animals Fund, supporting animal care at Franklin Park Zoo and Stone Zoo. But if you missed out on this one, never fear: This last auction went so well, the zoo has launched a new online auction to name its western lowland gorilla baby, born to zoo resident Kiki on Oct. 14. So if you’ve got an extra forty grand hanging around, or just want to help out a great cause, have at it.

Kiki’s new baby needs a name.


Meanwhile, you’ll recall that we offered some of our own suggestions and asked readers what they’d have named the little hippo if given the opportunity. There wasn’t a Ptolemy among the suggestions, but we’d say some of these are even better. Results are listed below.

  • Akbar
  • Big Papi
  • Bronzo
  • Buttons
  • Chipley
  • Dave
  • Dean Koontz
  • ELF
  • Happy
  • Henry
  • Hippo McHip-Face
  • Horatio
  • HORUS, Egyptian sky god
  • Joemala
  • Moto moto
  • “My granddaughter Ella wants to name him Taco”
  • Nugget
  • Peter Potamus
  • Seamus
  • Sully

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