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Liz Bickel | all galleries >> Life: Multiple Galleries >> Galleries of Life: Multiple Galleries >> All Holidays! Multiple Galleries >> August: The Last Full Month of Summer > World Photography Day 2004
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19-Aug-2004 copyright Elizabeth Bickel

World Photography Day 2004

The pink skin and tongue captured my attention. Ditto the ivory stained teeth.

Plus, a mouth wide enough to do some serious damage.

"Hippos are one of the most dangerous animals in the world. Their massive weight, anatomy, and aggressive behavior are a major threat. On the African continent, hippos are responsible for about 500 human deaths yearly. Put aside their cute and peaceful look, hippos are extremely dangerous and unpredictable animals.

They are omnivores, but they usually survive on plants only, like the grass in the open savannah. However, for an animal that does not need teeth to feed, the hippos have blade-like sharp incisors and canine tusks. These structures were not made to mow the grasses in the savannah or cut down trees. These teeth were made to mow misbehaving animals, competition, or threats to their territory. Added to these insane tooth structures is a hippo's powerful jaw. The hippo jaw can open as wide as 150 degrees – 30 more degrees, and it’s a deadly straight line. Once the jaws are stretched as such, in one slam, hippos can crush the skull of any land animal, including their kind – even a man.

Hippos are responsible for around 500 deaths of people in Africa per year. Hippopotamuses are particularly aggressive in the water, and males would attack anybody that crosses their territory. Females tend to be less aggressive unless their young are threatened. The reason they attack humans has nothing to do with their diet, but with their unpredictable nature."

So, if you are on safari in Africa, keep this in mind.

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Apostolos Tikopoulos16-Aug-2022 19:18
Splendid shot of this big mouth, V
Jola Dziubinska16-Aug-2022 16:51
This looks scary, great capture, Liz. V.
Mieke WA Minkjan16-Aug-2022 12:01
very impressive V
LynnH14-Aug-2022 03:10
Very dramatic capture of this powerful critter. Excellent information too. V
carol j. phipps12-Aug-2022 23:12
Outstanding detailed portrait in word and image. Fascinating information and makes me ponder the experience by Sweitzer, caught in a boat completely surrounded by a thick herd of hippos— the experience caused him to coin and phrase, “reverence for life.”
Allan Jay12-Aug-2022 17:16
Intriguing shot…thanks sharing the hippo info!
lroz12-Aug-2022 01:05
great close-up ! That really is a magnificent shot especially of the open mouth.
Hank Vander Velde12-Aug-2022 00:33
Excellent well captured image well presented and well explained Liz.
Mairéad11-Aug-2022 21:32
I really like the composition here. That certainly a big mouth.
larose forest photos11-Aug-2022 19:46
Amazing shot of this animal with one of the biggest mouths!!It seems you were pretty close? Interesting info too! V
Helen Betts11-Aug-2022 18:42
Great shot! That is one very big mouth!
joseantonio11-Aug-2022 18:30
nice closeup capture.V.