Man swallowed by hippo, survives, shares his story (Video)

By on May 10, 2013 in Africa, Animals Comments

A man was swallowed by a hippo, but survives and shared his experience, as shown in the video below. Paul Templer, a river guide, claimed that he was taking groups of tourists down the Zambezi River near Victoria Falls, back in 1996, when he had that near-death experience with a male hippopotamus.

Paul Templer man swallowed by hippo

Paul Templer, the man who was swallowed by hippo
Image Credit: Paul Templer video

Templer, who was 27 at that time and is now living in Michigan, uploaded a video at YouTube in August 2010 titled “A Bad Day At The Office” relating his encounter with the mad hippo. Last week, he shared his story to Guardian‘s Chris Broughton, which is now going viral.

As noted in the report, Templer said that he then owned a business taking clients to Victoria Falls, located along the border of Zambia and Zimbabwe. He said that he was with three apprentice guides, who were all in kayaks that day. He said he was about to grab the arms of one of his guides who had been flung out of his boat, when the hippo attacked him until it swallowed him.

“I was aware that my legs were surrounded by water, but my top half was almost dry. I seemed to be trapped in something slimy. There was a terrible, sulphurous smell, like rotten eggs, and a tremendous pressure against my chest.” Paul Templer said, as told to Chris Broughton, posted at

“My arms were trapped but I managed to free one hand and felt around – my palm passed through the wiry bristles of the hippo’s snout. It was only then that I realized I was underwater, trapped up to my waist in his mouth. I wriggled as hard as I could, and in the few seconds for which he opened his jaws, I managed to escape.” Templer added.

Templer suffered nearly 40 puncture wounds; his arm was crushed and was eventually amputated. But two years after the incident, he went back to guide on the same river and met the same hippo again, but was not able to attack him this time. Paul Templer is now a motivational speaker.

Paul Templer, sharing his story when he was swallowed by a hippo
Video Credit: PaulTempler/YouTube

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