Who is it?
It may approach three tonnes, hence it is considered one of the largest land mammals.
Following an amphibious way of life, the hippopotamus always keeps its eyes, nose and ears out of the water, so it always knows what is happening around it. To dive it uses special muscles which hermetically block their sense of smell and hearing (they can hold their breath for up to five minutes).
They are currently found above all in the western and southern regions of Sub-Saharan Africa, through their status is vulnerable.
What are its habits?
The hippopotamus spends most of the day submerged in rivers and lakes; only in this way can it protect itself from the African sun and from drying out. Its hide is very sensitive to high temperatures.
It is a social and territorial animal which lives in groups ranging from 20 to 100 individuals. It feeds at night, when it goes out to graze on grass. A peaceful animal, it easily gets angry if disturbed. The female usually gives birth to one calf every two years.
Did you know…
Its love for water is ancient. So much so that in Greek civilisation they were known as “horse of the river”.