Water Buffalos, Terror on the hoof

When I was a young man, actually a boy, I was extremely fascinated with animals, particularly wild animals. This was well before the internet. Mostly everything or resource was via magazines. I read a lot on the subject.

I want to tell one tale. I can’t remember where I read this story. I can’t remember the author either. I wished I could, I would give him credit. It speaks well of an author when a young boy can read something he wrote and the boy remember it over 60 years later.  It is about an African Buffalo, an its bad temper.

The story goes like this:

It was a warm spring day. The thought of going riding was particularly appealing to him. He hadn’t been in a while. It would do him good. After saddling up, he left no message as to where he was going except he would be riding his sorrel gelding. He left his home and headed out.

He was aware of the abundant wildlife in the area, dangerous and passive. He carried a rifle on his saddle. He seldom used it, so no real attention was given to it. He would regret it as he didn’t check to see if it was loaded or if he even had any shells. He wouldn’t need it, right? This mistake would cost him dearly. I guess in the long run, it made no difference.

He had ridden around 5 miles from his home. It was a nice day. He say numerous wildlife. Most seemed to show him no mind. He had lived in the bush most of his life so he was always paying attention to the dangers, if any.

The trees that inhabit the Africa Plains are not that tall. The rains had come and the trees were abundant.

He never say the old bull as the bull charged him and his horse. The bull hit his horse knocking him down to the ground. It slung the young man about 20′ away from the horse. He was unable to get to his rifle. He ran to a nearby tree and immediately climbed up it. He could not get far up it. It just wasn’t that tall, but it was a tree.

The horse was able to regain his feet but only for a moment. He took off running but the old bull knocked him down again. This time, he would not regain is feet. As the old bull kept battering him, his life slowly left him. The old bull in his fury, kept at the horse till only a lifeless body lay on the ground. With blood in is nostrils, he turned to find the man. It didn’t take him long to see the man in the branches of the tree. He repeatedly kept at the tree but couldn’t knock the tree down. The man was safe for a while. But he had to bring his knees to his chest to keep the old bull from getting his legs.

The old bull still had access to the rider’s feet. The rider hadn’t worn boots this day. His foot ware was soft and easy to remove.

A tongue of an African Buffalo is extremely course. This was Mother Nature’s way of helping him to secure grasses and low hanging vegetation in the bush.

The bull left the tree. At one point the rider considered coming down and try to walk home. He waited. The bull waited in the bush nearby out of sight. After 2 hours of waiting the bull came back to the tree. He had thought he would catch the rider on the ground. When this didn’t work, he would try something else.

He began to lick the rider’s feet. He would just barely reach is feet with his course tongue. After several moments  the soft foot ware came off exposing the flesh to the tongue. The feet began to bleed. After several hours, his feet had bled so much as to expose the bones in the feet. The rider was bleeding excessively.

After 24 hours of this ordeal, help came. The Old bull was killed by the tree he had caused so much death.

The horse was dead.  The rider died the next day from loss of blood.

The African Bull showed such extreme aggression.

Their are numerous tales of these creatures back tracking and hunting the hunters.



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