A boy aged 2 from Uganda was reportedly swallowed by a hippo, which spat out the child out again after an onlooker pelted the animal with objects.
A two year old boy from Uganda was reportedly swallowed by a hippo and spat out again, after an onlooker pelted the animal with objects, according to Uganda Police Force spokesperson Enanga Fred.
According to authorities, the attack took place on December 4 in Western Uganda almost 2 kilometres from Lake Edward in the Kasese District.
“The territorial police in Katwe-Kabatoro, in Kasese, registered an incident of a hippo attack, after it grabbed a 2-year old boy from the head and swallowed half of his body. The victim was attacked on December 4 at around 3pm, while playing at their home in Rwenjubu Cell, Lake Katwe-Kabatoro town council area, in Kasese District.”
Police say this is the first such incident where a hippo had strayed out of Lake Edward and attacked a young child.
Authorities further said it took the bravery of a one nearby man by the name of Chrispas Bagonza to save the little boy, after he stoned the hippo and scared it, causing it to release the boy from its mouth.
Police said the victim was rushed for treatment at a nearby clinic for injuries on the hand, and later transferred to Bwera Hospital for further treatment.
“He recovered fully and was discharged, after receiving a vaccine for rabies. He was thereafter handed over to the parents by police.”
Authorities said that although the hippo was scared back into the lake, all residents near animal sanctuaries and habitats should know that wild animals are dangerous.
“Instinctually, wild animals see humans as a threat and any interaction can cause them to act strangely or aggressively.”
Police further reminded all residents of Katwe-Kabatoro town council are, which is within Queen Elizabeth National Park, to remain vigilant and alert Uganda Wildlife Authority rangers about animals that have strayed into their neighbourhoods, said Fred.