Pygmy Hippopotamus

Pygmy Hippopotamus – Profile | Facts | Diet | Habitat | Behavior

(Last Updated On: April 9, 2021)

A Pygmy Hippopotamus, or a pygmy hippo, is a kind of nocturnal species closely attached to common Hippopotamus we see. This article will be discussing in depth, about the Pygmy Hippopotamus, its physical description, characteristics, habitat, food, reproduction, behavior and conservation issues.

As per the source, the pygmy hippopotamus (Choeropsis liberiensis or Hexaprotodon liberiensis) is a small hippopotamid, mainly native to Liberia, with small populations in Sierra Leone, Guinea and the Ivory Coast.

Rare pygmy hippo
Rare pygmy hippo

Pygmy hippo is repetitive and nocturnal. It is one of only two species in the Hippopotamidae family, the other is a relatively larger relative, the common Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius) or the blue Hippopotamus. While the pygmy hippopotamus exhibits many terrestrial adaptations, like Hippo, it relies on water to keep moisture and skin moist and to keep its body temperature cool. Behavior such as cohabitation and giving birth can occur in water or on land. Pygmy hippo herbs, found in the forest, feed on fern, wide-leaved trees, grasses and fruits.

A rare nocturnal forest animal, pygmy hippopotamus is a difficult animal to study in the wild. Pygmy hippos were unknown outside of West Africa until the 19th century. Introduced to the zoo in the early twentieth century, they breed well in captivity and extensive research has emerged from the zoo specimens.  The survival of the species among the captives is more assured than in the wild; The World Conservation Union estimates that less than 3,000 pygmy hippos remain in the wild.

Pygmy Hippo
Pygmy Hippo

Pygmy hippos are primarily threatened by habitat loss, as forests are logged and converted to farmland, and poaching, bushmeat, natural predators and war victims are also occurring. Pygmy hippos are one of the species most commonly hunted for food in Liberia.

Extinct pygmy and dwarf hippos

The small hippopotamides of most species have also disappeared into the late Pleistocene or early Holocene in the Mediterranean. Although these species are sometimes referred to as “pygmy hippopotomy”, they are not believed to be closely associated with C. libreiensis. These include the the Sicilian hippopotamus (Hippopotamus pentlandi), the Maltese hippopotamus (Hippopotamus melitensis), the Cyprus dwarf hippopotamus (Hippopotamus minor) and Cretan dwarf hippopotamus (Hippopotamus creutzburgi).




The skin is greenish-black or brown, the lower body becoming creamy gray. Their skin is several centimeters thick that is very similar to ordinary hippos with a thin epidermis on the dermis. Pygmy hippos have an abnormal emission similar to that of ordinary hippos, which have a pinkish color on their body and are sometimes described as “blood sweat” although this emission is not sweated or blood. It is believed to have substances, hipposodoric acid, antiseptic, and sunscreen properties. The skin of the hippos dries quickly and gets cracked, which is why both species spend so much time in the water.

The skeleton of C. libreiensis is more severe than the normal hippopotamus, meaning that the bones are proportionally thin. The spine of the common hippo is parallel to the ground; The possible adaptation to cross the Pygmy Hippo more easily with opal, dense forest vegetation. Proportionally, Pygmy Hippo’s legs and neck are long and its head smaller.

Mother and child having a bath
Mother and child having a bath

The pygmy hippos share the same common form as the hippopotamus. They have a gravitational skeleton, with four legs and four toes on each foot, which support a carrying frame.

The pygmy hippo, however, is about half taller than the hippopotamus and weighs less than 1/4 as much as its older cousin. .7.74 ft) and weighs 180–275 kg (397–606 lbs). [25] Their lifespan in captivity ranges from 30 to 55 years, though they are less likely to survive this long in the wild.

The origins and nasal texts of the pygmy hippo are rarely pronounced, an adaptation of spending less time in deep water (where the pronounced orbit and nostrils help the common hippo to breathe and see). The legs of the pygmy hippos are narrower, but the toes are more spread out and have less webbing to help move them to the forest floor.

Despite adapting to more terrestrial life than an ordinary hippopotamus, pygmy hippos are more aquatic than all other equal-toes. The ear and nose tubes of the pygmy hippos have strong muscular valves for submersion, and the physiology of the skin is dependent on the availability of water.



The behavior of pygmy hippo differs greatly from hippo. Most of its behavior is similar to that of TP, although it is the effect of mutated evolution. Although the common hippopotamus gregarious, pygmy hippos are alone or in small groups, there is usually a matched pair of mother and calf.

Pygmy hippos ignore each other rather than fight when they are seen. Field studies estimate that the male pygmy hippos have a range of 1.5 km2 (৪60০ acres), while a female ranges from 0.4 to 0.6 km2 (99–148 acres).

Baby stands near its parent
Baby stands near its parent

Pygmy hippos spend most of the day hiding in the river. They will rest in the same place for several days before moving to the new spot. At least some of the pygmy hippos use dense or old marshes on the banks of the river. Pygmy hippos help to create these cubes or how common they are to use. Although a pygmy hippo has never been the target of the elderly, other arthrodactyls, such as warthogs, barrow.


Like the normal hippopotamus, pygmy emerges from the water during the evening to eat hippos. It relies on game trails to travel through dense forest flora. It traces the tail with its tail firmly in place while leaving the rectum to spread its feces further. Pygmy spends six hours a day eating hippo food.

Eating a vegetable
Eating a vegetable

Pygmy hippos are vegetarian. They do not eat significant amounts of aquatic plants and rarely eat grass because it is unusual for the dense forests they live in. Most of the Pygmy Hippo diet consists of ferns, wide-ranging plants, and fruits that fall on the forest floor. It has been noted that eating different types of plants of pygmy hippos will eat any plant available to them. This diet is of higher quality than the normal hippopotamus.


A study on reproductive behavior in weeds has never been conducted; The observed behavior of the pygmy hippos at the zoo may be different from the natural conditions due to the artificial conditions of the prisoners.

Sexual maturity for pygmy hippopotamuses occurs between the ages of three and five years. The youngest to give birth is a pygmy hippo at the zoo Basel, Switzerland, which was born three years and three months old. The egg cycle of the female pygmy hippo lasts an average of 5 days, with the sea itself within 24-5 hours.

Nuzzling couple
Nuzzling couple

While pygmy hippos mate for mating, the duration of the relationship is unknown. In the zoo, they breed as a single twin. Equivalent circulation can occur on land or in water, and a pair will mate one to four times during a tidal period. While in captivity, pygmy hippos are conceived and born all month of the year. The gestation period lasts from 12-20 days and is usually reported as having given birth to a single young person, although twins are born.

The common hippopotamus only gives birth and mates in water, but pygmy hippos mate and give birth on both land and water. The young pygmy hippos can swim almost immediately. At birth, pygmy hippos weigh 4.5-6.2 kg (9.9–13.7 lbs), with men weighing about 0.25 kg (0.55 lbs) overweight.

Pygmy hippos are weaned from six to eight months of age; When they leave their mother for grass before breastfeeding, they do not come with them, but they hide in the water. The mother returns to the hiding place about three times a day and calls the calf to suck. Sucking with the mother lying on the side.


The biggest threat to the remaining pygmy hippopotamus population in the wild is the loss of habitat. The forests in which the pygmy hippos live, make very little effort to logging, resilience, and sustain logging subject to conversion to agriculture. As forests shrink, populations become more fragmented, with less genetic diversity in potential mating pools.

Pygmy hippopotamus
Pygmy hippopotamus

Pygmy hippos are one of the species most commonly hunted for food in Liberia. Their meat is said to be of excellent quality as wild boar; Unlike ordinary hippos, Pygmy Hippo teeth have no value. The effects of West African citizen strife on the pygmy hippopotamus are unknown but are unlikely to be positive. A pygmy hippopotamus can be killed by leopards, pythons, and crocodiles. How often this happens is unknown.

In certain conditions of zoo species survival more certain than the survival of wild species, the pygmy hippo survives 42 to 55 years longer than the wild. Of the zoo-born pygmy hippos that have been born at the zoo since that age, only 59 percent are female.

Why is Pygmy Hippo Endangered?

Pygmy Hippo’s IUCN status is “Endangered”. Recent population estimates indicate that wild areas may have less than 3,000 pygmy hippos. Both types of hippo habitats are threatened due to logging and human settlement.

How big is Pygmy Hippo?

The pygmy hippo, however, is about half taller than the hippopotamus and weighs less than 1/4 as much as its older cousin. 18074275 kg (397-606 lbs).

When was the Pygmy Hippo endangered?

Edge of existence: The future of the endangered pygmy hippo is secure. Although a large mammal, the pygmy hippopotamus is a rare and rarely seen species. Its population was estimated at only 2-5 people in the year 1 and since then the number has decreased due to habitat loss and hunting.

Are pygmy hippos lonely animals?

The pygmy hippopotamuses are usually solitary but sometimes found in small families. Men, called bulls, have a larger area than cows, and both mark their homes with their bows. … to learn more about the vegetarian diet of pygmy hippo.

Can Pygmy Hippos Swim?

Pygmy hippies can close their ears and runny noses while drowning underwater. Pygmy hippos did not swim. They actually move along the bottom of the water in a slow gallop.

A pygmy hippo is exploring its new home
A pygmy hippo is exploring its new home

How long can a pygmy hippo stay underwater?

Five minutes
Their nose is closed and they can hold their breath for five minutes or more when submerged. Hippos can even sleep underwater, using a reflex that allows them to wake up, breathe, and sink back without waking.

What is the difference between pygmy hippo and hippo?

However, it differs in behavior and physical characteristics. Pygmy hippo water is adapted to spend time, but aquatic far less than hippo quiggie hippo teeth are different: it only has one pair of incisors, while hippo has two or three.

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Is Pygmy Hippos Aggressive to People?

Hippos are considered offensive and very dangerous. They have large teeth and teeth that they use to fight threats, including humans. Sometimes, their youngsters suffer from the mood of adult hippos.

Is Pygmy Hippos Dangerous?

Where common hippos are widely distributed, highly visible, and hardly any of the most dangerous large animals in Africa have ever seen the pygmy hippo in the wild. Pygmy hippos are shy, lonely and nocturnal, living mainly in forests and wetlands.

How many pygmy hippopotamus are there in the world?

It is estimated that about 2,6 pygmy hippos remain in the wild, declining as their habitat declines, and they continue to hunt bushmeat.


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