June 23, 2011


Hippos are one of the most dangerous animals in Africa and can easily outrun a human (can you run 19 mph?) despite weighing between 3,000 and 4,000 pounds. At our camp in Zambia, they came up out of the river next to my cabin at night to forage for food. But our most up close and personal encounter was by mokoro, the traditional dugout canoe used on the Okavango Delta.
We approached a large pod and got so close, we could photograph the bristles on this one's back.
The little one was curious but the bull was furious!

On several river cruises, we saw hippos swimming with birds on their back who tried to keep the hippos bug-free. The hippos would scramble up the bank to get out of our way.
 But they didn't seem to mind the crocodiles.
A pod of hippos gathered by the man-made watering hole.
This ailing mother hippo laid down in the middle of the road.  Her calf will stay with her for days until he must return to the river and eat.

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