There is something special about seeing a young animal in its early stages of life. Witnessing some of their first experiences with the surrounding environment, indeed a new and fascinating stimulus on all their senses. Yesterday morning, I observed a hippo in its infancy, experiencing its new world, all the while clasping to the side of its mother. It bobbed up and down, exploring the underwater world, and then coming up for air, and a glance at this other different world. Mother sat partially submerged in the shallow water, most certainly to allow her young to touch the lake floor.
Later that afternoon, a few other hippos began to approach, perhaps trying to rejoin a former pod mate, or perhaps curious of this miniature creature. They kept their distance for an hour or so, one could only imagine to gain the mother’s trust, and eventually the mother began to advance and allowed them within a few meters. I was able to view them later that afternoon as well, with a beautiful backdrop of sunset painted clouds, most likely some of the last until the next rainy season.