Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals.
Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals are after elephants and rhinos. An adult male hippo weighs about 1800kg while a female weighs about 1500kg. The weight of the hippos keeps growing until they are 25 years of age. They are also closely related to whales and dolphins. Hippos also have barrel-shaped bodies with short legs and a long muzzle. The eyes, ears, and nostrils of the hippo are on top of the head. They have little hair on the body; their skin is 6 cm thick providing it with high protection against predators. The upper part of the body is purplish-gray to blue-black while the lower part is brownish-pink. The Hippos skin produces a natural sunscreen substance referred to as blood sweat that turns red-orange-brown within minutes.
Life of the Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammal
Hippos – Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals are semi-aquatic mammals that spend most of their day in the water. They cannot swim, they only keep bouncing at the bottom of the water. However, adult hippos can spend 6 minutes underwater, and their raised eyes, ears, and nostrils allow them to remain almost entirely submerged for an extended period. Territorial bulls control a stretch of a river with a group of 5 to 30 females and calves. Hippos are not territorial on land; they graze solitary. They leave the water at dusk and move for 8km feeding on the short grasses. They also spend about 4 to 5 hours grazing and consume about 68kgs of grass each night.
Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals are such aggressive and unpredictable animals. They are among the most dangerous animals in the world. Despite their weight, hippos can run at a speed of 30km/hr on land for a short distance; which is faster than man. While in water they can move up to a speed of 8km/hr resurfacing every 3 to 5 minutes to breath.
Hippos reach sexual maturity between 5 to 6 years for females while males are sexually mature at 7.5 years. They have a gestation period of 8 months giving birth to usually one calf. The peak reproduction period is often during the wet season. They reproduce and give birth under water.
Communications is through grunts and bellows. Hippos also have a unique ability to hold their heads partially above water and send out a cry that moves through; both water and air and the individual respond above and under water.
Where to see Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals.
Hippos Uganda’s 3rd largest land mammals have a lifespan of 40 to 50 years in the wild. Hippos are must-see animals while on a wildlife safari in Uganda. These hippos inhabit most national parks such as Kazinga channel has the highest concentration of hippos in Uganda. The other place to see hippos is Ntungwe river in Ishasha sector of Queen Elizabeth national park. Murchison Falls and Lake Albert also has hippos that inhabit the waters. Other places to see hippos is Lake Mburo and Semuliki national park.