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Hippo saves zebra foal and wildebeest calf

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posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 03:53 AM
Some interesting footage is getting a lot of attention. In the footage it would appear that a hippo saves a wildebeest calf from drowning, by gently nudging the calf towards the shallow end. Later the same happens with a zebra foul.

It's unclear from the footage whether it's the same hippo on both occasions.

Considering that hippos are feared for their short temper and vicious attacks it's amazing to see this animal can be this gentle and - if we can put human emotions to it - "caring".

This is also not the first time a hippo plays the rescuer as we saw here where a hippo "saved" an impala from a croc.

I can't help but wonder if this is pure instinct, are we reading more into it than just plain curiosity from the hippo's side or is there actually some intelligence/emotion behind the action...?

Whichever it is, it's touching to watch.

edit on Fri Dec 3 2010 by DontTreadOnMe because: spelling in title

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 03:56 AM
News24 covered the story. According to the article it's the same hippo in both situations.

Yule and several others saw the strong current sweep a young wildebeest calf downstream.

"The hippo immediately went after it and positioned itself on the downstream side of the calf, nudging it with its snout and keeping it above the water all the way across the river until the calf reached the other side and managed to get out and join the rest of the herd."

Barely five minutes later the water swept away a zebra foal. The hippo immediately set off after the foal and helped it toward the opposite bank in the same way.

"It was incredible to watch," said Yule. The foal was utterly exhausted when it eventually managed to get on to a little rock island very close to the opposite bank.

"It just stood there panting," he said.

"The hippo got out of the water and came up behind the foal and started nudging it and gently biting it on its backside as if to say, 'Come on man, don't give up now, you can do it. Just a hop, skip and a jump and you're there.'

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 04:00 AM
Thanks for the heartwarming video!!

Interesting to see animals having emotions like that to help out another species, proves that animals have similar emotion to us.

The hippos are like the life guards.

Sweet little video.


posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 04:25 AM
Is it wrong that this really moves me? This animal, without intelligent reasoning such as ourselves, is able to step beyond its natural boundaries in the interest of kindness/compassion/whatever, and we, as refined, evolved people are barely capable of this anymore.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:44 AM
reply to post by MGriff

It may not lack intelligent reasoning skills given that it knew enough to position itself where it could catch and guide the two animals. I often think humans are incredibly inexplicably blind to to the intelligence and reasoning capabilities of animals. I am often astounded at what astounds some researchers. A lot of things I have always taken for granted about animal intelligence is only just now being observed and acknowledged by scientists? I often feel like shouting "dudes, what took you so long? Still I understand the scientific method has to be a careful laborious process.

thanks to the op for sharing this uplifting story.

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:45 AM
reply to post by Gemwolf

Zebra 'foal' maybe. Sorry to nit pick. Neat vid though. Thanks for sharing.

edit on 3-12-2010 by redhorse because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 3 2010 @ 09:56 AM
Here's a video of a Hippo apparently giving mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to a dying Impala.

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