The hippo is one of the largest animals on Earth.
Thus, the largest males can reach a weight of 4 tons, which, however, is slightly less than that of elephants. But in terms of weight, a hippopotamus can argue with a rhino for second place.
Hippos are very distinguished by their appearance. They have a large body similar to a barrel, short and thick paws, a huge head, and a funny tail. The head is very large and can reach a quarter of the weight of the animal itself. The neck, we can say, is absent, although, in fact, it is, very short, so it is not visible. Its ears are small, its jaws wide, and its face has whiskers.
The hippopotamus skin is very thick – sometimes up to 4 cm. Through the skin, the animal loses a lot of fluid, so it can crack during drought.
In nature, a hippopotamus has few enemies. Among the – lions and Nile crocodiles. In fact, even in the case of an attack, hippopotami often repulses the predators. Often, much more dangerous are various diseases that can cause damage to animals. These are anthrax, tuberculosis, and Necrobacteriosis. The last two diseases are usually found in hippos who live in zoos.
The lifespan of a hippo is about 40 years. Specialists say they have never met a hippopotamus older than 42 years. In captivity, the lifespan of a hippo can reach 50 years, and in especially rare cases – 60 years. Once the hippopotamus’ primary teeth are completely erased, he cannot live long.