Huge Nile Hippo Doesn’t Feel Threatened by a Safari Jeep and Shows Its True Size

Written by Sharon Parry
Updated: October 9, 2023
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When you weigh up to 4,500 pounds and have plenty of attitude, you have very little to fear from a safari jeep! The hippopotamuses in this clip are quite happy to graze and wallow in the vicinity of some tourists. It’s only the baby hippo that is paying any attention to the visiting humans. Scroll down to see the full impressive footage and get a close-up view of these magnificent creatures.

Do Hippos Normally Live in Water?

The hippos in this footage are spending a lot of time in and around the water. It’s perfectly normal for a hippo to spend the day submerged in deep water. They may only have their eyes and nostrils above the surface. Others like to bask in the sun or on sandbars but these will also be very close to the water. If hippos are startled, you can often see them submerging completely with only the top of their head showing. After several minutes, they resurface to check that the danger has gone.

Water is extremely important in the life of a hippopotamus. If the river or watering hole dries up, they will migrate up to 30 miles to find a new one.  Before dark, the hippos leave the water and move to grazing ground. Here they can spend around five hours eating and may take a nap while they are there.

A hippo submerged in water, with only its eyes and nostrils visible

Hippos spend their day in or near water.

© Uriadnikov

Do Hippos Normally Live in Groups?

In this clip, the hippos seem to be quite laid-back about the presence of other hippos. Whilst they don’t live in formal, organized groups, hippos are gregarious and are happy to spend time with others. We get a glimpse of the basic social unit in this clip – which is a cow with her calf. A female can be accompanied by up to four successive offspring. She is also willing to put up with other hippos that are not related to her but only if they are young.

A hippo herd normally comprises between 10 and 15 individuals but groups of over 100 have been spotted.

How Many Babies Does a Hippopotamus Have?

Here we see a Mom hippo who seems to be accompanied by just one calf. Hippos give birth to just one calf – there are reports of twins but these are rare. She gives birth either in shallow water or on land. Hippo mothers are very protective of their calves, Unlike adults, can be targeted by Nile crocodiles, hyenas, and lions!

Watch the Impressive Clip Below

The photo featured at the top of this post is © Nick Greaves/

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About the Author

Dr Sharon Parry is a writer at A-Z animals where her primary focus is on dogs, animal behavior, and research. Sharon holds a PhD from Leeds University, UK which she earned in 1998 and has been working as a science writer for the last 15 years. A resident of Wales, UK, Sharon loves taking care of her spaniel named Dexter and hiking around coastlines and mountains.

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