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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Number 27. Hippopotamus's.

The hippo I made for the TIAS is in the post before this one(in case you missed it).

Playing around tweaking Jane's Hippopotamus pattern to give him a pointier ear further forward on his head and a bulbous eye nearer to his ear, together with a flatter squarer head.
Here is my first attempt in Coates Madura Red Heart 20 measuring 12cm from snout to tail he is not quite as I want him yet.

Second try is in Coates Anchor Perle in a varigated red to brown, he measures 11cm. His head looks better but he still looks a bit too much like a Pit Bull Terrier!! still not quite right, will have to have another go, I think he could do with some nostrils too. these are very important to a hippo as he spends most of his time in water and can close their nostrils to stay under water up to 5 minutes.

They come out of the water when it is cool at night to eat grass.

Here is my first hippo you wondered why I had chosen such a dull greenish grey colour. Well when he comes out of the water, rolls around in the mud a bit to keep the flies from bothering him, this I think is the colour you would see as he dries off. Looks like he spotted something tasty to eat.

We lived in Tanzania for two years and went on several safaris to the game parks in Tanzania and Kenya. All this tatting of animals sure takes me back, sometimes it seems like just yesterday, sometimes a lifetime ago. People used to say that Africa gets under your skin and it does.
Dragged out the box of slides, borrowed a slide scanner and here they are, full of dust and sometimes strangely coloured! wonderful what a little photoshoping can do.

We never actually saw a hippo out of the water, just as well as they are one of the most dangerous animals you could meet, very aggressive (especially if you call them fat or ugly!!!!).

This group of hippos ( thanks to Jane just found out a group of hippos is a bloat!)is in the soda lake in Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania.
Click on the photos for a bigger image.

This look like a mother and baby.

And this lot are in a hippo pool in Serengeti, could almost have fancied a swim in there to get out of the heat.

Finally here is my very own bloat of hippos

I chose this colour thread as it is the nearest I can get to that lovely shiny mahogany/pink colour that a hippo in the water is.

He is making his way back into the water to join his group, just look at that glint of anticipation in his eye. What a wonderful life.

I sincerely hope that the kin of these hippos are still enjoying life in the water almost 40 years on from when these photographs were taken.


  1. Thank you for sharing your bloat of tatted hippos and photos of hippos. I especially like the way you are able to juxtapose the tatted on Tanzania backgrounds! Very cool. Just loved making the Hippos - my favorite that I tatted was one made primarily of Marilee's Pizzaz thread and it has a Pearl eye.
    I've read all the posts today so want to say thankyou for sharing the Gecko stories; and, tatted ones, too! Love you blog!

    In Sunny New Mexico, USA

  2. Wow BJ that was dedicated reading,(hope you read my other blog too!!! that will keep you out of mischief for a long time!)

    I have pizzaz too, I have Marilee's threads just to look at!! (and make geckos for which use they were obviously intended!!) more geckos coming soon to a blog near you!


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