Lazy eyes listen
Iga Paul was playing outside his house on a Sunday afternoon, as most 2-year-olds do.
But there was Lake Edward, one of the tiniest bodies of water in the Great Rift Valley, just over 800 yards from the toddler’s Ugandan home. Lake Edward is home to large, hungry animals.
According to Ugandan police, a hippopotamus attacked Iga on December 4 at around 3 p.m. local time in a highly unusual land attack for this region.
The hippo was being attacked when a passerby who had observed the ambush started hurling stones at it. When the human attacker finally scared the hippo away, it spat the small kid out and fled back to the lake.
The victim had to be saved by the bravery of one Chrispas Bagonza, who was nearby, when he stoned the hippo and scared it into releasing the victim from its mouth, according to a statement from the Ugandan Police Force.
According to the police statement, “This is the first incidence of its sort where a hippo strayed out of Lake Edward and assaulted a small youngster.”
Iga was taken to a local clinic for treatment of his wounds before being subsequently sent to Bwera Hospital in west Uganda for additional care. He received the rabies vaccine before being released to his parents’ custody, according to the officials.
The police statement reads, “Despite the fact that the hippo was terrified back into the lake, all inhabitants near animal sanctuaries and habitats should know that wild animals are quite dangerous. Wild animals automatically perceive people as a threat, and any encounter with them might make them behave abnormally or aggressively.
According to Virunga National Park in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, hippos are the third-largest land animal in the world and are mostly found in rivers, lakes, and swamps in eastern, central, and southern sub-Saharan Africa.
According to National Geographic, hippos are among the deadliest beasts in the world and kill 500 humans in Africa annually. They are two times more lethal than lions. The likelihood that a hippo attack will be deadly ranges from 29 to 87 percent, according to data from the Oxford Medical Case Reports journal that was published in 2020.
A Detroit woman died in 2017 while on an African safari with her family. According to Detroit News, Carol Sue Kirken, 75, was attacked by a hippo while on vacation in Tanzania. According to her obituary, she passed away suddenly while being held by her son Robert.
A hippo pulled Kristen Yaldor underneath when she was canoeing with her husband in the Zambezi River to commemorate her 37th birthday, the hippo attack survivor told ABC News in 2019.
For around 45 seconds, the hippo tossed Yaldor around in the water while holding tightly to her leg. Yaldor claimed that as she pulled on the hippo’s jaws, it released her. When she got back to the United States, her right leg needed seven operations to be fixed because her femur was broken.
Yaldor remarked, “[I] didn’t have a chance to yell, it was simply so rapid.”