Escaped hippo wanders through suburban neighborhood

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April 15 (UPI) -- Residents in a suburb of Cape Town, South Africa, had a brush with the wild when a hippopotamus escaped from a nature reserve and wandered through the streets.

Grassy Park residents captured photos and videos when the hippo broke through a fence at the Rondevlei Nature Reserve and went wandering through residential streets just after midnight Saturday.


Resident Ashraff Schwartz said police pursued the hippo into the yard of his family's home.

"My 74-year-old mom watched from inside the house, very scared, as the hippo came straight for our door. The police were standing outside the yard," he told Independent Online. "It then turned around and ran up the road, but before then it broke my wall as it jumped over it. Hippos are dangerous animals and it could have killed someone. The nature reserve will have to put up stronger fencing for our safety."

Local officials said the hippo's escape was apparently spurred by the animal fleeing an altercation with a dominant male inside the reserve.

The Cape of Good Hope SPCA Wildlife Department said police and Quemic Rangers were able to herd the hippo back to the reserve. There were no injuries reported to humans or hippos.


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