Terrifying moment hippo charges tourist boat

This is the terrifying moment a tourist boat was forced to dodge a huge hippo charging towards them at high speed.

Footage from on board the boat, in the Chobe River, Botswana, shows the hippo diving underwater and careering towards the camera with such speed that it creates larges waves.

The video, shot by tourist, Craig Jackson, then shows the hippo rising from the water just a few feet away from the boat and lunging at stunned tourists.

A guide, from Pangolin Photo Safaris, can be seen quickly speeding up and moving out of the way just in the nick of time.

The video shows the hippo diving underwater and careering towards the camera

The video shows the hippo diving underwater and careering towards the camera

Toby Jermyn, from Pangolin Photo Safaris, said: “Our clients were photographing these hippos from quite some distance when the hippo decided to charge.

“Whats really staggering is their speed through the water. They literally run along the bottom of the river, rather than swim, and then launch themselves upwards.

“A bow wave is the general warning but the guides know that the animal is several metres closer than the front of the wave.

“We have never once had an instance where we have been hit by a hippo as the guides are too wary for that.

“Hippos have 12 inch protruding tusks on their lower jaws that can puncture the hull of a boat with ease, especially when you consider that there is several tonnes of angry animal behind them.

“They are very territorial animals and we are always aware of their position on the river so as to give them a wide berth.

“Throughout most of the year they ignore the Pangolin Photo Safaris boats and we can photograph them using our long lenses.

“If they feel that we are getting too close they will often open their immense jaws in a display of warning that we are encroaching on their territory then returning to a more sedate posture.

“During breeding season however the bulls have huge amounts of testosterone coursing through their veins and they become very aggressive, mostly to one another.

“We have often witnessed brutal fights between rival males from a very safe distance of course.

“Hippos are amazing animals and a joy to photograph, especially when displaying to each other but we must always remember that they are without doubt one of Africa’s biggest killer and they should always be treated with respect.”

Pangolin Photo Safaris operates all year round on the Chobe River in Botswana teaching clients wildlife photography skills.