Hippo bite kills Taiwan tourist in Kenya

Hippo bite kills Taiwan tourist in Kenya
Hippo bite kills Taiwan tourist in Kenya

A Taiwanese tourist has died after being bitten in the chest by a hippo he was trying to photograph in Kenya.

Chang Ming Chuang, 66, was tracking the animal at a wildlife resort on Lake Naivasha, 90km (56 miles) north-west of the capital, Nairobi.

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A second tourist, also from Taiwan, was injured. Six people have been killed by hippos in the area this year.

High water levels have seen hippos - the world's deadliest large land mammal - stray on to resorts for pasture.

The Kenya Wildlife Service initially identified the two tourists as Chinese but Taiwan's foreign ministry later confirmed they were Taiwanese nationals. Kenya has no formal ties with Taiwan and recognises China's claims over the island.

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Witnesses said the two had come too close to the animal near the Sopa hotel. The bitten man was rushed to hospital bleeding profusely but later died.

The second tourist, named as Wu Peng Te, was treated for minor bruising at Naivasha District Hospital.

David Kilo, chairman of Lake Naivasha Boat Owners Association, told Kenya's Star newspaper that rising water levels had reduced pasture areas for hippos, forcing them on to farms and hotel grounds, and increasing contact between the mammals and humans.

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The Kenya Wildlife Service said it was tracking the hippo concerned.

Hippos, which are aggressive, have sharp teeth and weigh up to 2,750kg (three tons), kill an estimated 500 people every year in Africa.

Tourism earned Kenya $1.2bn (£950m) last year, with 1.4 million international arrivals.