Hippo attacks in Kenya kill 2, including Taiwan tourist taking pictures, authorities say
By Katherine Lam
A tourist from Taiwan and a local fisherman were killed in two separate hippo attacks, authorities said Sunday.
A tourist from Taiwan taking pictures at a lake in Kenya on Sunday was attacked and killed by a hippo — just hours before a local fisherman was mauled to death in the same area by another hippo, authorities said.
Chang Ming Chuang, 66, and his friend, Wu Peng Te, were at the edge of Lake Naivasha in Kenya’s Rift Valley when a witness said they got too close to a hippo and were attacked, the BBC reported. Both were taken to the hospital in Naivasha, about 56 miles southeast of Nairobi, the Kenya Wildlife Service said in a statement.
Chang was later pronounced dead. His friend was treated for minor bruising.
Authorities said it’s unclear what circumstances led to the attack on the tourists. Wildlife service spokesman Paul Udoto said attacks on tourists are rare because they are usually protected by guides.
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Later in the day, a Kenyan fisherman was also mauled by another hippo a few miles from where the initial incident occurred, police said.
“The man was bitten on the chest and his injuries were serious and he died minutes after he was retrieved from the lake,” said Rift Valley Head of Criminal investigations Gideon Kibunja.
At least six people have been killed by hippos around Lake Naivasha this year, the BBC reported.
Hippos are the world’s deadliest large land animal due to their aggressive nature and sharp teeth. The animals can weigh up to three tons and kill about 500 people in Africa every year, the BBC reported.