Readers may remember that in late November I posted a photograph of an allegedly yawning hippopotamus, and pointed out that it wasn't yawning: it was making a threat display, telling the photographer to go away - or else.
For those of you who still can't think of hippos as anything except the cute dancing beasts in Disney's Fantasia, here are two videos showing how aggressive and calculating they can be. The first is from a BBC program, showing the presenter almost ambushed in his canoe.
He was very lucky there were members of his team to keep an eye on the hippo and direct him to a safer place. If he'd been on his own, I doubt he'd have made it out alive.
The second video was taken from a tourist boat on Lake Naivasha in Kenya. I blame the boat pilot for this - he went far too close to groups of hippo. This angered the dominant male in each group, who clearly assumed that the boat was a threat to his harem, and responded accordingly.
Anyone think that if the hippos had caught up to the boat, they'd have merely asked to have their necks scratched? No? I thought not . . .