Just last week we saw a lone porcupine fend off an entire pride of curious lions, and now a young elephant has done the same. Captured by a tourist at the Norman Carr Safaris Chinzombo Camp in Zambia, this footage makes it pretty clear why a baby elephant should stick to its herd like glue.

Well and truly outnumbered, with nothing but its bulk and incredibly tough, 2.5-centimetre-thick skin to defend itself with, the elephant made for the relative safety of the shallow water - at one point with three lionesses attached to its back.

We were a little surprised to see the lions being so reluctant to chase their enormous meal into knee-deep water, but lions just simply aren't that used to swimming. According to ecologist Christiaan Winterbach, who has been working with wildlife parks in Botswana and Zambia for the past two decades, lions aren't known as swimmers and will only cross rivers and streams if they absolutely have to. This is at complete odds with their stripy cousins - tigers love water, and will seek it out regularly to cool down, as the video below shows so wonderfully.

While there was a brief "nooooooo!" moment when the elephant inexplicably made its way back on shore - towards the lions - after having lost them in the water, it has reportedly since made it back to its herd. It's been given the unofficial, but very fitting, name of Hercules.

"In the many years I have been a safari guide in Zambia at the South Luangwa, never have I seen anything like this," said Innocent, one of the safari guides. "We were all so worried the elephant would be killed right before us. What a fighter. It fought off all 14 lions. Incredible."

And here's why nothing's safe from tigers in the water:


Source: Norman Carr Safaris