Agitated hippos attack stranded lion in the middle of Crocodile River

Posted on 15 March 2023 By Jordyn Johnson

An angry bloat of hippos attack a young male lion, stranded on a rock in the middle of Crocodile River.

Steyn Jacobson is a co-owner and guide at South Post in the Kruger National Park (KNP). He told Latest Sightings that he and his group of visitors had a quiet start to the morning, and they decided to drink their coffee down by the river ‘so that the guests could enjoy the view’ one last time before their departure. ‘Always looking around for something, [Jacobson] saw the hippos’ strange behaviour’ and as they watched, they noticed the hippos circling a rock and becoming increasingly agitated.

Using his binoculars, Jacobson realised what was happening. A young male lion was stranded on the rock and had upset the resident hippos.

Lions don’t generally enter bodies of water willingly, so the 30-year-old guide knew that this sighting was something truly special.

‘Looking through my binoculars, I saw what appeared to be a male lion. Stranded on the rock, surrounded by tons of angry hippos. All of a sudden, a big hippo went for the lion, and the lion had no choice but to jump off and into the water. In the end, another hippo went for the lion, but luckily, he missed it,’ he explained.

The male lion turned out to be a young nomad without an established territory. Unlike dominant males who will defend a specific territory, young nomads roam about until they establish one. ‘It was clear that this male lion had wandered into the wrong territory, and the hippos were not going to let him off easily.’

Jacobson’s final thoughts are that if you are ever lucky enough to witness such a rare sighting, ‘take it all in and savour every moment. These moments are fleeting, and you never know when you might witness something truly special in the wild.’

Watch the rare sighting below:

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