AUSTIN (KXAN) — A video of a supposed close encounter with a monstrous hippo — so large that the first question that comes to mind is about the video’s authenticity — is making its rounds online. Nakita Dunaway posted the YouTube video, saying in the video’s post that this happened during a tour on Africa’s Lake Kariba in Zimbabwe.
The video shows a colossal hippo bursting through the surface of the water like the great white shark “Air Jaws” on Discovery’s “Shark Week.” The “river horse,” as the Greek named the massive water-loving mammal, seems to be after a speedboat with the Malawian Style tour company.
“There’s nothing like getting too close for comfort when you’re far away from land!” reads the post.
National Geographic says hippos spend up to 16 hours a day submerged in rivers and lakes to keep their massive bodies cool under the hot African sun. Good swimmers, hippos can hold their breath under water for up to five minutes. However, they are often large enough to simply walk or stand on the lake floor, or lie in the shallows. Considering their enormous size, a hippo’s food intake is relatively low. If threatened on land hippos may run for the water, and they can match a human’s speed for short distances.
This video elicits the same trepidations that arose while watching a video of a mountain biker being chased by a grizzly bear — showing a biker out on a ride in the woods when he suddenly realizes he’s being chased. The video goes on to show the big guy keeping up with the biker — who later ends up ditching his wheels and hiding from the bear after being hindered by a log in his bike path. Eventually, the bear is scared off by a couple of gunshots