Today is World Hippopotamus Day.
There are 2 living species of Hippopotamus both of which live in Sub-Saharan Africa. One is the Nile or Common Hippopotamus and the other is the pygmy hippopotamus.
Hippos live in many different water ways, everything from rivers to mangrove swamps and estuaries and are semi-aquatic usually cooling in the water by day and grazing on land during the night. They have webbed toes which help them in the water and also help them grip on steep or slippery banks when on land.
They are herbivores and eat mostly grasses and very little aquatic vegetation.
Hippopotamus live between 40 - 50 years of age and can weigh up to 3300Ib (1500kg) for the male (Bull) and 2900Ib (1300kg) for the female (Cow).
There estimated to be between 115000 - 130000 hippos left in the wild but they are under threat from loss of access to fresh water and are also subject to unregulated hunting and poaching..
The Pygmy Hippopotamus lives only in the forests and swamps of West Africa and are critically endangered. They are solitary and nocturnal creatures and only around 2500 remain in the wild. They are threatened by habitat loss and poaching and hunting.
If you would like more information on these captivating creatures I've included some links below:
By Brendon Crook