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Scientific classification
Kingdom Information
Kingdom Animalia
Phylum Information
Phylum Chordata
Class Information
Class Mammalia
Order Information
Superorder Cetartiodactyla
Order Artiodactyla
Family Information
Family Hippopotamidae
Genus Information
Genus Hippopotamus
Species Information
Species H. amphibius
Binomial name Hippopotamus amphibius
Population statistics

Hippopotamuses (from the Greek for 'River Horse') are large herbivorous semi-aquatic African mammals, and the only four-toed ungulates. Once living in northern Africa, the hippopotamus is now only found south of the Sahara. The hippopotamus may have been the behemoth mentioned in Job 40:15-24. The hippopotamus and pygmy hippopotamus are the only living species, a small number of extinct species are also known from fossils.


Hippopotamuses may weigh up to 7000 pounds and reach 5 feet in height. They live in schools[1] and submerge themselves in rivers to protect themselves from the sun, coming up for air every 5 minutes or so, although they are able to remain submerged for up to thirty minutes.


A hippopotamus is a herbivore, eating up to 150 pounds of grass in a night. They are able to regurgitate their food, chew it again as cud, and then swallow it for digestion.


Hippos are born underwater and have to swim to the surface to breathe. They are also able to suckle underwater.


While hippos may look comical and docile, they're in fact territorial and aggressive animals, known to kill more people in Africa than mammals like lions and buffalo. Males will fight each other over females and any source of water, using their front teeth to stab and inflict wounds. They share space with crocodiles, which will not attack a fully-grown hippo but may go after a calf.


  1. http://www.hipposchool.com/