Character Info

Like I said, you're my hero.

–Mtoto, Follow That Hippo!

Mtoto is a young male elephant and a member of Ma Tembo's Herd.


Mtoto is a small grey elephant. He has some dark grey freckles on his face just under his eyes, and dark blue eyes. His pink inner ears have three ridges on either each, and three strands of hair stand atop his head. Under his trunk and belly is a lighter grey. He has two large but stubby white tusks sticking up on each side of his lower jaw. His tail has a dark grey tuft at the end.


Mtoto appears to enjoy following and playing games with others. He admires Beshte and wants to be just like him. He is enthusiastic and energetic, and hopes to someday become a member of the Lion Guard. He is apologetic when he makes a mistake. Though failure makes him feel quite downhearted, he allows himself to be comforted. He knows how to be polite towards others. [1] Mtoto will happily express his faith towards others.


Bunga the Wise

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Mtoto fans Bunga

Mtoto is one of Bunga's loyal followers who is fanning a leaf over his head. He stops once he sees the rest of the Lion Guard approach, but Bunga urges him to continue. When the temporary dam breaks, Mtoto continues fanning his leaf in the air until he realises that Bunga has left. He follows Bunga, who enters the canyon. Realizing that Mtoto is following him with the water close behind, Bunga calls out for him to run, waiting behind as the little elephant runs into the canyon ahead of the honey badger.

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Mtoto is safe!

But Ono accidentally leads the crew to a dead end. Mtoto and the other animals look to Bunga for help, who instead tells them to listen to Kion, who is the real sage. With no other option, Kion uses the Roar of the Elders to blast the water away and save the animals. Just a short while later, Mtoto is safe and sound with his mother, playing in the new river that Kion has created.

Fuli's New Family

During the song My Own Way, Mtoto is shown walking with his herd. Fuli dashes past them and comes to an abrupt halt, facing them as she sings. Mtoto and his herd sing with her briefly before Fuli races away.

Follow That Hippo!

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Mtoto nods sheepishly

A group of Pride Landers are seen grazing peacefully when Mtoto rushes out from behind a cluster of grass, warning them of a hyena attack. The Lion Guard arrives and discovers that the "attack" was only some young animals playing Lion Guard. One explains that the game was Mtoto's idea, and Mtoto backs into the grass. Kion has Ono report that it was a false alarm, then questions the young animals about their game. They tell him that they take turns being each Lion Guard member, spare Mtoto, who is "always Beshte". Mtoto then approaches Beshte, who greets him kindly. When Mtoto remains silent, Beshte asks if Mtoto wants to ask him anything, and Mtoto proceeds to rapidly ask Beshte a series of questions. He then suggests to Gumba, Kwato, Shauku, and Kambuni that the real Lion Guard plays with them. The Guard declines, as they need to go off and train, but Beshte invites Mtoto along with them, to Mtoto's great excitement. Along the way, Mtoto explains to Beshte that he is the biggest reason why Mtoto likes the Lion Guard.

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Landing on Bunga

The pair of them arrive at training, where Kion announces that the Guard's first task is an obstacle course. Mtoto asks if he can run it to, knocking Ono over in the process, and Kion permits it, but orders Beshte to keep with him. Mtoto ends up failing the first two tasks, jumping over a boulder and moving through a pool of shallow water, after he trips both times and accidentally sprays Fuli with water on the second. Kion decides to try something different, and Mtoto promises to do better this time. The Guard attempts a stealth drill, and Mtoto follows Beshte for a while, but notices a sloped rock path and decides to try it on his own. When Beshte rushes to Kion with the news that he cannot find Mtoto, Mtoto announces his presence from a tall rock. However, he trips and falls, sliding down the rock, but managing to grab a small branch with his trunk. Beshte moves below him just as the branch breaks, and Mtoto apologizes to Beshte for messing up. Kion says that it may be time for Mtoto to head home. Mtoto agrees, and Beshte decides to walk with him.

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Mtoto with his hero, Beshte

As Mtoto walks home, he apologizes to Beshte again, and Beshte attempts to comfort him. Noticing that Mtoto still looks downcast, Beshte sings the song Hero Inside to make him feel better. Mtoto happily asks Beshte if he has what it takes to be a hero, and Beshte assures him that he does, even complimenting Mtoto's ability to spray water from his trunk. He adds that Mtoto may join the real Lion Guard when he is older before heading back to the others. Gumba, Kwato, Kambuni, and Shauku approach him, asking where he has been, and Mtoto proudly announces that he was training with Beshte and the Guard. He expresses a desire to play Lion Guard, and the others consent, but soon realize that the game isn't much fun without bad guys to chase. Mtoto suggests using hyraxes as the bad guys, and he and his friends dash after a trio of hyraxes, calling them by the names of the hyenas.

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Mtoto gets cornered by Janja's clan.

The hyraxes soon escape, and Mtoto asks his friends what they should chase now. Janja speaks from behind them, suggesting that he and his minions chase Mtoto and his friends. The five friends flee in terror, with Janja racing after Mtoto. Mtoto manages to evade Janja, but the three hyenas continue to pursue Mtoto, who eventually begins to tire. As he stops in front of a river, they approach him and begin debating which parts of him to eat, to Mtoto's horror. Beshte suddenly jumps out of the water behind Mtoto, scaring the hyenas away. He asks Mtoto if he can swim, and Mtoto says that his mother hasn't taught him yet, so Mtoto clambers onto Beshte's back. Beshte begins to swim further down the river, but the hyenas follow them. Mtoto at first hopes that perhaps the hyenas are simply going in the same direction, but when Cheezi and Janja pause to wait for them to pass, he contradicts himself.

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Mtoto fights the crocodiles.

Beshte instructs Mtoto to duck, and they escape Cheezi and Janja's attack safely. Beshte then defeats Chungu by launching him into the water, impressing Mtoto. Beshte soon realizes that they are heading right towards a float of crocodiles, and ducks underwater, with Mtoto lifting his trunk above. A crocodile notices and alerts the others, and they quickly surround Mtoto and Beshte, who flee, with the crocodile float swimming in pursuit. Mtoto uses his trunk to spray the nearest one with water, and Beshte compliments his shot. The rest of the Lion Guard arrives and knock the hyenas into the water, causing the crocodiles to chase them and allowing Mtoto and Beshte to reach the shore safely.

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Admiring his "Mark of the Guard"

Mtoto later recounts the story of escaping the crocodiles and hyenas to his friends. Kion comments that they'd had quite an adventure today, and dips his paw into mud, using it to bestow Mtoto with the Mark of the Lion Guard. Mtoto then approaches Beshte, saying that he is his hero, to which Beshte replies that Mtoto is his.

Beware the Zimwi

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Listening to the tale

Mtoto, Young Rhino, a hare and two porcupines are listening to a story told by Rafiki late at night. Mtoto listens inquisitively as Rafiki tells them the tale of a legendary beast known as the Zimwi. Assuring the mandrill that he is not frightened, Mtoto urges Rafiki to continue. Rafiki explains that the Zimwi only enters the Pride Lands on the night of a full moon, which Bunga points out that they just happen to have that very night. Suddenly, a strange bellowing noise frightens Mtoto, but he is relieved when it turns out to be his hero, Beshte, practising for The Bellow Fellows. Rafiki becomes annoyed at the interruption, though Mtoto begs him to continue the tale.

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Scared Mtoto

Rafiki does so in song form, which scares Mtoto at the end. Kion tells them to relax, certain that it's just a story. When Fuli asks Rafiki to confirm, he answers equivocally, and shoos the children away to bed. Mtoto, still frightened, turns to Kion for additional assurance. The elephant becomes spooked when the wind howls, so Kion suggests that he and his animal friends sleep together that night. They agree, and head off. Beshte starts to bellow again which once again causes Mtoto to become startled, but after the hippo apologises, he cautiously continues.

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Fearful over the duo's words

Mtoto, Young Rhino and the hare curl up next to a rock, sleeping peacefully together. A rustling in the bushes causes Young Rhino to awaken, and he promptly cries out after seeing what he believed to be the Zimwi. Once Young Rhino runs away, Mtoto and the hare notice it too, and they follow suit. The trio locate the Lion Guard who are sleeping together at Hakuna Matata Falls, and quickly wake Kion and his team up. They explain that they saw the Zimwi themselves, describing just what Rafiki had told them to the Lion Guard. Kion is visibly annoyed, and promises them that the Zimwi is just a story. Suddenly, a weird scraping noise causes them to become frightened again, though it is revealed to be Timon and Pumbaa. They then continue to explain how Timon knows of the Zimwi, though it is revealed that his Ma's cousin's friend knew an ox that was eaten by the Zimwi. Kion notices the holes in his story, but Timon does not back down on his words, telling the children that there's nothing they can do to stop the Zimwi. This worries the young animals, so Kion takes the Lion Guard out to discover what the Zimwi really is.

Ono's Idol

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Mtoto sprays his friends

Mtoto rises up from the lake to sprays Young Rhino and Shauku with a spurt of water. When Mtoto asks his friends if they hear something, Shauku at first fails to hear anything, but soon sees the flock of birds flying overhead. Then, appears to worry about them and watches the Lion Guard appear from a distance, Mtoto rushes up to say hello to Beshte.

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Attending the ceremony

Later, Beshte and Young Rhino attend Hadithi's Royal Mud Print Ceremony. When Young Rhino leads Mtoto to the front they are told that the positions are reserved for birds only. Although this upsets Young Rhino since they are Hadithi fans too, Mtoto calmly tells them that they'll find another place to sit. This impresses Beshte, who compliments him on his kindness. Mtoto replies that he doesn't mind, since Beshte is still his number one hero. Mtoto then finds a new spot for himself and Young Rhino and together they watch the ceremony.

The Savannah Summit

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Mtoto playing Baobab Ball with the Guard.

Mtoto is seen playing Baobab Ball with the Lion Guard, until he hears his mother calling for him via infrasound. With Bunga eager to hear more about Mtoto's skill, the youngster listens in and hears Ma Tembo on her way to Pride Rock, which Ono confirms to be true. He then hears Twiga also on her way to Pride Rock, and Kion realises that they must be on their way to the Savannah Summit. But then Mtoto hears another cry from a crocodile on his way over, and the Lion Guard race away to deal with the situation.

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Mtoto speaks of Makuu.

At Mizimu Grove, Mtoto hurriedly arrives at the summit to warn the Lion Guard that he heard an angry Makuu down by the Watering Hole. Once again, the Lion Guard take off, discovering an argument between him and Bupu. Once dealt with, Kion compliments the young elephant for hearing the dispute, and asks him to keep his ears open for anymore suspicious activity. Mtoto agrees, and immediately gets to work, listening in for any voices he can.
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"I'll do my best."

Mtoto soon overhears Twiga talking to Vuruga Vuruga about Makuu. He hurries back to find the Lion Guard, who are certain that they're in trouble. They rush to find the pair in a clearing, but Makuu is nowhere to be seen. Mtoto then tells them exactly what he heard, and both animals become nervous, eventually sending the Guard away. As they comment on how suspicious they were, Beshte states that it's a good thing Mtoto can hear out for anything worrying, and Bunga tries again to listen in Mtoto's ear. When a cry for help emerges, Bunga believes that he is getting the hang of it, only to be told that everyone heard Zazu's cry. They take off immediately, leaving Mtoto behind.

It turns out to be a false alarm, and nothing more than a misunderstanding between Mbeya and Big Baboon, which Zazu got caught in the middle of. Mtoto rushes in, having heard Makuu and Bupu fighting again, this time at Pride Rock. Once more, the Lion Guard race away to deal with it.

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Mtoto listens again.

Later, Mtoto hears more suspicious activity. He and the Guard race to inform Kion, who needed to do a bit of soul searching after making a major mistake. Bunga worriedly informs Kion that Mtoto has heard Makuu on the attack. Kion asks for more information, and the calf confesses that he heard something about an attack, but he's not sure who with. Bunga is certain that it's Makuu, but Kion asks for Mtoto to listen again. Mtoto hears a female voice say that they'll do it after sunset, and relays the message to Kion. Although he is unable to determine who it is, the rest of the Guard believe it to be Makuu. But Kion starts to examine all of the evidence, and comes to the conclusion that Makuu isn't planning anything, and that the other animals are targeting Makuu, prompting a rescue mission for Makuu instead.

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Mtoto hurries home.

At sunset, Mtoto waits with the Lion Guard and other animals at Mizimu Grove while Kion delivers some bad news. He explains that Makuu fell into a trap and perished, causing the animals to feel guilty over how they treated him. But it is soon revealed to be false, and just a way of discovering who set Makuu up in the first place. After Makuu deems the plan worthy of a crocodile, Mtoto hears his mother calling for him again. Mtoto rushes back home after telling his friends goodbye, leaving Bunga glad that he doesn't have Mtoto's ability.

The Lion Guard: The Rise of Scar

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Beshte guides Mtoto.

Mtoto is seen with his herd as they follow Ma Tembo as she is in a search for a new source of water until they are attacked by Janja and his hyenas. As he continues to run, Mtoto is almost caught by Janja and Nne until another herd member sends them flying and thanks to the intervention of the Lion Guard the herd is saved and they continue the search for water. But then, Mtoto and his herd are attacked by the hyenas again this time the baboons are with them; they continue to run towards a dead end and Kion uses the roar to drive them away.

After the elephants and baboons are safe, Mtoto along with the rest of the herd express faith in Ma Tembo as she continues the search for water. Then, when Ma Tembo locates the new source of water; Mtoto helps everyone dig out resulting in everyone having a watering hole for the dry season. 

The Ukumbusho Tradition

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Proud Mtoto

In Mizimu Grove, Ma Tembo is ordering her herd around in preparation for the upcoming Ukumbusho celebration. After Ma Tembo directs the Lion Guard to a place where they can rehearse, Mtoto and his mother notice Beshte nearby. Mtoto races over to inform his hero that he will be playing the strongest elephant, while his mother takes the role of bravest.

Later, Mtoto watches his mother and Bunga rehearse their lines. His mother becomes frustrated with the honey badger as he forgets his lines, though Simba's arrival prompts them to start the show.

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The Peace Branch

With several elephants and Simba's Pride all waiting anxiously around Mizimu Grove, the event begins, with the Guard singing "May There Be Peace", and telling the tale of Askari, the first Lion Guard leader, and how he brought peace between the elephants and lions, agreeing to protect each other and everyone who obeys the Circle of Life. Mtoto arrives with the Branch of Peace in his trunk, before leaving for the next scene. The event runs smoothly, until a swarm of bees suddenly arrive, chasing the elephants away.

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The bees hound Mtoto

After running for a while, Mtoto starts spraying dirt onto the bees to make them leave. It only works briefly, much to Beshte's disappointment. Kion suggests getting Fuli to direct Mtoto's spurts onto his paint and she does so. As the paint is removed, the bees disperse. Mtoto thanks Beshte for saving him (much to Fuli's chagrin), and Ono quickly locates the elephants heading towards Sehemu Pass. Since the elephants will get stuck there, the Guard follow Ono's shortcut to beat the herd to the pass.

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Spraying the paint

When Ma Tembo gets stuck as expected, Mtoto spurts dust onto her head, removing the paint and the bees in the process. After Beshte moves her out of the way, Mtoto and Ma Tembo repeat the process on Zito and Johari. When Mtoto notices that his mother is still missing, Ono locates her on Mapango Cliffs. The Lion Guard (and Mtoto) quickly race away to save her. When they arrive, Kion prevents Mtoto from heading up, fearing the weight will bring the cliff down. Instead, Bunga bounds up, and ultimately saves her from falling, much to Mtoto's relief.

They return to the grove, where Ma Tembo is persuaded to start a new version of the show, where paint is not used. After reminding everyone that her paint is still on her forehead, Mtoto's Mom has her paint sprayed away by her son. They then start the new Ukumbusho.

Timon and Pumbaa's Christmas

When Bunga wishes to put on a Christmas celebration for his uncles, Beshte speaks with Ma Tembo's herd about involving them in the show. Although Ma Tembo is skeptical, Mtoto persuades her by mentioning how Beshte is practically family, and how much they enjoy performances. She agrees, and later that night they meet Bunga and several other animals to rehearse.
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Mtoto gets excited and starts to trumpet early, but Bunga grabs his snout and orders him to be quiet, in case Timon or Pumbaa hear him and wake up. They continue practising through the night, but when they appear not to have got the hang of it, they start leaving. They return when King Simba manages to get Bunga to speak about why it's so important to him.

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Once the sun has fully risen, Mtoto and his herd return to Hakuna Matata Falls, where they perform "The Twelve Ways of Christmas", with Mtoto joining in the 'honking'. At the end of the performance, they all wish each other a Merry Christmas.

The Kilio Valley Fire

Mtoto is first seen when the Lion Guard try to put out the fire in Kilio Valley and leaves with Ma Tembo while the strongest elephants in his herd help the Guard put out the fire. Then when Army of Scar starts to attack Ma Tembo's herd he is protected by them and he and his herd try different escape routes to avoid them, but in the end, are trapped by them and begin to attack until Fuli and Bunga come to help them. Sadly Mtoto and the others have no choice but to evacuate and finally make it out safely. After Ma Tembo declares that they need a new home they first try out Ndefu Grove where the Galagos live but as his herd starts to walk they start shaking the ground causing Laini and her Galagos to fall off their trees which makes Lani call this a disaster forcing them to leave. Next Mtoto and the others try living with Twiga and her herd but when they start to eat they yank down a whole branch angering Twiga as she states that is they keep this up there be no food left for them and so they leave again. The last place they try out is with Bupu and his herd to which he kindly welcomes them until they start bathing throwing dirt all over the place again angering the leader of another herd by their actions. He then asks Besthe if the antelopes will kick them out too and Kion tells them to stay here while he thinks of something else. Once again the elephants are kicked out and Kion tries to tell them he will find them another home Ma Tembo says its best for them to leave the Pridelands and there with his Mtoto walks over to Beshte and says goodbye.
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Goodbye Beshte...

When another fire hits Ndefu Grove and the other Elephants are asked by Kion to come back and help, Mtoto stays behind with his mom along with the other little ones to stay safe and like everyone else.  






  • Mtoto's first named appearance was in Meet the New Guard.
  • Mtoto appears briefly during Call of the Guard.
  • Mtoto's tusks appear to be growing out of his lower jaw whereas, in real life, elephant tusks grow out of the upper jaw.
  • In the book adaption of Follow That Hippo!, Mtoto appears to be drastically different from his design in the show.


  1. Follow That Hippo!
Characters in The Lion Guard
The Lion Guard Members
Kion's Family
SimbaNalaNala's FatherKiaraMufasaScar
Other Animals
AjabuAskariBasiBadiliBig BaboonBobokaBupuChamaChuraDhahabuFurahaGenetGumbaHafifuHadithiHamuHayaHodariJasiriJohariJuhudiKambuniKifaruKinyongaKongweKovuKuchimbaKulindaKuluKwatoLainiMadoaMajinuniMakiniMakuuMa TemboMbeyaMbuniMekundu BatsMjombaMuhangaMuhangusMuhimuMtotoMwenziMweviMwiziMzahaNyuniOgopaOnaPorcupine BrothersPuaPumbaaRafikiRahaRaniSable Antelope #1ShaukuShingoShujaaStareheSokweSwalaTamaaThe Bellow FellowsThurstonTiifuTimonTumbiliTunuTwigaUrohoVuruga VurugaWemaYoung RhinoZazuZigoZitoZuri
Unnamed Animals
Baby BaboonBaby Baboon's MotherBaby HippoBoboka's SonFemale DuckFemale HareFemale MonkeyFemale MouseFemale ServalFemale WagtailGumba's MotherHyraxJerboaKlipspringerLittle MonkeyMale BushbuckMale CheetahMale CrocodileMale MongooseMale OryxMale PorcupineMale ServalMale TurtleMale VultureMtoto's MomTimon's MaYoung AardvarkYoung HareYoung HedgehogYoung Rhino's MotherYoung Serval
JanjaCheeziChunguDogoDogo's SiblingsGoigoiKengeKiburiKijanaLionessMapiganoMakuchaMpishiMwogaMzingoNduliNjanoNneNukaNyataNyeusiReireiScarShupavuSumuTamkaTanoUshariVitaniWazaZira