Surfing Hippos

«Surfing Hippos» Michael Nichols 2000. American journalist and photographer Michael Nichols and National Geographic Society researcher Michael Fay embarked on the arduous 2,000-mile journey from Congo in central Africa to Gabon on the continent’s west coast. Here Nichols took an amazing picture of hippos swimming in the midnight blue Atlantic Ocean. It was an event that few had seen before. Hippos spend most of their time in the water, their habitat is usually an inland river or swamp.

In this astonishing shot, a hippopotamus’s face and eyes peer out over the rippling ocean.

Gabon’s President Omar Bongo was inspired by Nichols’s photographs and created a system of national parks that now cover 11 percent of the country, ensuring that there is at least some wilderness (from the site