Facts about Hippopotamuss
Top Hippopotamus Facts
While no other animals in the world can be mistaken for the Hippopotamus, there are many facts about them
that people aren’t aware of them. Here are facts that you will be quite impressed with. First, they are referred to
as the Hippo because too many people can’t spell their real name correctly!
The word Hippopotamus is Greek and it means River Horse.
They are herbivores which means they only eat plant life. Due to their enormous size though many people assume
that they are meat eaters.
There are two species of Hippos – Pygmy Hippos and Common Hippos.
They are the second largest land animal in the world – only elephants are bigger. They are the third heaviest
animal in the world with the elephant and the white rhinos weighing more. A full grown Hippo can weigh from 1 ½ to
Due to the fact that Hippos spend so much time in the water, they are classified as being semi-aquatic. They
emerge from the water at dusk so that they can graze for food.
Hippos use the water to cool their body temperature as well as to conserve energy. If they can’t find water to
cool down then they will try to do so in mud.
Both mating and giving birth occur while in the water for the Hippo.
While Hippos are very territorial in the water, they freely roam on land without such conflicts.
Many people assume that the Hippo is closely related to the pig due to their body design. However, they really
aren’t related to them. Instead, they are closely related to whales and porpoises.
In spite of their large size, Hippos can run up to 19 miles per hour for short distances. They can run faster
than humans do don’t think for an instant that you can tease one and get away!
They are considered to be one of the most dangerous animals in the world. This is because of how aggressive they
are by nature.
There are approximately 125,000 to 150,000 Hippos in the wild around Africa. Smaller numbers of them remain in
Tanzania and Zambia.
A group of Hippos can be referred to as either a pod or a herd.
Male Hippos are bulls, females are cows, and a baby is considered to be a calf.
There is evidence that several species of hippos have become extinct out there. One of them within the last
The hunting of Hippos for their ivory teeth and for meat continues to decrease their population. That along with
their environment being taken away are prime reasons why they are at risk of survival in the wild.
Only two mammals in the world are larger than the Hippo – whales and elephants.
Hippos are able to run along the bottom of the water where they live due to the gravity of their body.
Hippos continue to grow in size until they are about 25 years of age. They can typically live 45 to 50 years in
the wild, so they are growing for about half of their life. The oldest living Hippo is named Donna and she is 57
years old. She lives in a zoo in the state of Indiana in the United States. However, one named Tanga that lived in
Germany is believed to have lived the longest as it was 61 years old when it died.
They range from 11 to 17 inches long.
Sometimes you will see a reddish tint from the skin of the Hippo. This is the body’s way of producing a type of
natural sunscreen for protection from the heat. When it is coming off the body it is often mistaken for blood or
for sweat but it isn’t either of them.