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Quick Facts About the Hippopotamus

by Yule Xie



Hippos don’t really come up when I ask people what their favorite animal is. However, I believe hippos truly are animals we should respect and adore. This article will discuss some basic facts about hippos, including their lifestyle and diet.


Don’t underestimate the size of this animal! According to the African Wildlife Foundation, hippos are the third largest land animal in the world. From my knowledge, I have seen descriptions in the zoo which indicate that hippos can weigh 4,000 pounds (that is heavier than some small cars!).


Additionally, like me, you have probably seen videos on YouTube shorts about hippos opening their mouths and eating pumpkins/watermelons. Indeed, if you look at those videos, you can see that hippos have very large teeth.


Image Source: USA Today


However, this might be a surprise: according to USA Today, “hippos are primarily herbivorous.” This means that hippos usually eat plant products only. Therefore, despite having such large teeth, they are not made for eating meat.


Don’t get completely fooled by the previous statement though – you should still be careful about hippos because their sheer size makes them dangerous. I have seen videos on YouTube shorts where hippos can attack large animals, even predators like lions.


The hippos’ habitats are mostly located in Africa. According to the African Wildlife Foundation, there are two main types of hippos that live there: the common hippo and the pygmy hippo (which is smaller).


Image Source: Dimensions


Finally, although this animal may be familiar to all of us, hippos are labeled as “vulnerable” in their conservation status. There are many reasons for this, such as illegal hunting and products made from hippo teeth. Therefore, in order to save hippos, we should stop interfering with their habitats.





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