Scientific Name -Hippopotamus amphibius

Classification – Ungulate

Gender Names – Male – bull; Female – cow;  baby – calf

Collective Noun – A bloat

Average Height – 150 cm (60 inches)

Average Length – 4 metres (13 feet)

Average Weight – 3,000 kg (6500 lbs)

Top Speed – 40 km/h (25 mph)

Life Expectancy – 40 years

Mating Season – dry season

Pregnancy – 224 – 259 days

Special Features –   A hippopotamus can stay underwater for about 15 minutes. Their name literally means ‘water horse’. They are commonly referred to as hippos.

Family Unit – Hippopotamuses live in medium sized groups of about 15. The groups are made up of mainly females and young. The group often have a dominant male. Hippos are territorial and will chase off any other hippos invading their territory.

Distribution of hippopotamus on world mapGeographical Distribution – West and East Central Africa

World Population – 125,000 – 250,000 (estimate)

Conservation Status –  Vulnerable

Natural Habitat – grassland rivers and lakes

Diet –  herbivore

Predators -Calves are in danger from lions, hyenas, and crocodiles. The adult hippopotamus is usually too much for most predators to handle


Harvard Reference for this page:

Heather Y Wheeler. (2015). Hippopotamus. Available: https://www.naturalhistoryonthenet.com/Mammals/hippopotamus.htm. Last accessed Monday, July 18, 2016

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