By Tom Gillespie @TomGillespie1

A HIPPO bites down on an impala after the helpless animal ran into troubled waters

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On the run: The impala enters the water to escape a wild dog

The antelope was being chased by a pack of wild dogs, when it sprinted into the river in an effort to find safety.

As the desperate impala swam through the water it found itself in the path of two massive hippos.

Making a splash: The desperate impala heads further into the river

One of the powerful animals snapped its jaws around the impala, before both of them came crashing down on its body to try and drown it.

After being tossed around in the water, the lucky antelope was able to escape the huge vegetarians and get back to dry land.

A wild dog watches the action unfold

Professional wildlife photographer Hannes Lochner, 43, captured the images at the Khwai River in the Okavango Delta, Botswana, in July last year.

He said: “This is the kind of scene I love to capture.

“It was a great story to watch unfold and I was relieved it came to a happy ending.

In deep water: The hippos are breathing right down its neck

“I don’t think this kind of event has ever been pictured before. It’s certainly not something you see every day.

“After its struggle, the impala was left with just a bite on its leg.”

Open wide: The impala swims away from the hippo's massive jaws

South African photographer Hannes took the images after watching a group of impalas run from a pack of wild dogs.

Under the weight of it all: The massive animals gang up on the antelope

A less fortunate antelope was eaten by a crocodile in the river, while another managed to get away completely unscathed.

The impala barely keeps its head above the surface

An hour earlier another impala had ran into the water, but was drowned and killed by the ruthless hippos.

The hippo clamps its massive jaws on the impala