What Does a Hippopotamus Look Like?

hippopotamus-look-like Credit: Christian Heinrich/Getty Images

Hippopotamuses are large land animals characterized by their nearly hairless skin, wide snouts, and brown or grayish-purple skin. Hippopotamuses are the third-largest land mammals on Earth, weighing an average of 7,900 pounds and reaching approximate lengths of 15 feet.

Hippos rest during the daytime, wading in bodies of water to keep cool until nightfal, when they eat up to 88 pounds of grass. Although they boast tremendous bulk, hippos are able to reach speeds of up to 30 miles per hour on land. Hippos feature a complex system of vocalizations, and their call is able to reach 115 decibels. Their hearing is also excellent. Some experts believe that they actually use echolocation, a process by which bouncing sound waves help the animal to locate and gauge the distance to objects nearby. Hippos are also known for their extreme bad breath.