The Cape Town hippo eludes capture team last night

Houdini hippo capture at about 4am in Zeekoevlei in Cape Town

Gondwana Game Reserve
After a long night, the team from Gondwana Game Reserve and the City of Cape Town had to call off the Houdini hippo capture at about 4am in Zeekoevlei in Cape Town.

While the hippo, which escaped through a hole in the fence in Rondevlei last week, was sighted last night, it had not come far enough away from the water to be darted.

The rationale is that the sedative needs to take action before the hippo can get back to the water and run the risk of drowning.

The team says capturing a hippo can be a lengthy process, sometimes taking up to three weeks.

“We are not concerned that we were unable to dart the hippo last night, this is usual capture procedure and can take up to weeks, the most important factor is to ensure that the hippo’s safety is top priority and we will only dart the animal if the location is completely comfortable for the hippo with no risk factors” Says Mark Rutherford

Gondwana veterinarian Brendan Tindall says hippos are creatures of habit, so if tonight they do not capture the animal they will quickly be able to predict his movements.

When the hippo is captured, the Gondwana Nature Reserve along the Western Cape’s Garden Route will become his new home.

About 10 500 hectares of reclaimed agricultural land will be the perfect space for the hippo’s safety and life satisfaction. He will even have a friend waiting for him at the reserve.

If you wish to see the Cape Town hippo in its new home in the Gondwana Game Reserve near Mossel Bay along with a host of other beautiful creatures and lush vegetation contact the reserve by email at or on telephone at +27 21 4245430.

For any media enquiries, please contact Charleen White at Nicky Arthur PR by email at or by telephone at +27 21 424 0384.
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