A local fisherman and a Taiwanese tourist were killed in a single day by hippo attacks in Kenya’s Rift Valley, authorities reported.
Tourist Chang Ming Chuang, 66, was fatally bitten Saturday evening as he was taking photos of hippos near Lake Naivasha, said a statement by the Kenyan Wildlife Service.
A witness told The Star of Kenya that Chang moved too close to the animal, which suddenly turned on him and snapped at his chest.
Chang’s companion, Wu Peng Te, 62, was also attacked, but he only suffered bruises and was treated at a local hospital and released.
The maulings occurred hours after the fisherman was attacked just miles away in the same area, said officials.
The fisherman was also bitten on the chest. “His injuries were serious and he died minutes after he was retrieved from the lake,” Rift Valley criminal investigations chief Gideon Kibunja told The Associated Press.
(While the Kenyan Wildlife Service identified the men as Chinese, as Kenya does not recognize Taiwan’s sovereignty, officials in Taiwan later said the two tourists were from the island.)
Different hippos were responsible for the two attacks, according to officials. There have now been six fatal hippo attacks at Lake Naivasha this year.
A boat association owner told the Star that hippos are a particular danger now because high waters have forced the animals into new pasture areas bringing them closer to humans.
Hippos and lone water buffalo pose the highest risk to people in the area.
This story has been updated to include more details about the origin of the tourists.