Video: Hippo lifeguard

I’ve just read an amazing story online about a hippo-turned-lifeguard in Tanzania. Hippos can be very aggressive creatures, and are responsible for numerous attacks on people in Africa. This hippo has decided to help its fellow beasts in their annual migration.

At a river crossing on the Mara River, video footage was shot of this hippo stopping first a young wildebeest calf, and then a young zebra foal, from being swept downstream.

If you haven’t already seen it, here is the video.

Tags: , , , ,

Categories: Nature/Environment


I live on the Southern coast of South Africa, and write about the things that interest, amuse or inspire me. You can find me at and (my photoblog)


Subscribe to the Notes from Africa RSS and Twitter feeds to receive updates.

7 Comments on “Video: Hippo lifeguard”

  1. December 6, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    How amazing! I loved how the hippo waited to see that each of the young animals was safe before moving away. Nature is amazing. Thanks for sharing this.

    • December 6, 2010 at 3:36 pm #

      Yes, isn’t it amazing?! Just thinking of the level of comprehension (in understanding what the problem is) and empathy that the hippo has for another species is mind-boggling.

  2. December 6, 2010 at 4:08 pm #

    Remarkable! Truly! Thanks for sharing this, Lisa. I too love the way hippo patiently tends to his “friend” till the zebra safely scrambles ashore on the other side!

    • December 6, 2010 at 5:16 pm #

      Yes, the hippo doesn’t just abandon the zebra when it gets close to the shore. That poor little zebra was exhausted when it go to the other side.

  3. December 7, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    Amazing! Thank you for sharing!

  4. December 7, 2010 at 8:11 pm #

    Ahh!, that is just too awesome for words, especially since hippo’s are generally very dangerous creatures. Out of curiosity, is there any reference to the gender of that hippo?

    • December 7, 2010 at 8:49 pm #

      That’s an interesting question. I don’t know whether the hippo was male or female. It didn’t say in any of the reports I read. From the nurturing behaviour though I’d guess female.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: