How Pablo Escobar Single-Handedly Created the Hippo Crisis in Colombia

Pablo Escobar

Notorious drug lord Pablo Escobar smuggled four hippos into his personal zoo during the 1980s. But wild hippos are normally only native to Africa and their escape after Escobar’s death has left Colombia with an unanticipated problem. Due to reproduction, there are now dozens of hippos walking around one of the country’s rivers.

This episode looks at how the behavior of these hippos affects Colombia’s biodiversity and how people became attached to their presence.

Vox Borders is an international documentary series by Emmy-nominated producer Johnny Harris exploring life at the edge of nations. Check out all the Vox Borders episodes here.


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