Hippos are dangerous creatures. Although they coexist with crocodiles, conflicts never end. Sometimes they end up killing each other. But do hippos eat crocodiles?
This article will answer some of the most burning questions concerning hippos and crocodiles. Keep reading to learn more.
Can Hippos Eat Crocodiles?
No, hippos kill crocodiles but not for their meat. In short, hippos are herbivores whose diet consists of grass and plant materials. Although they have huge mouths, they’ll never eat meat. Their digestive system cannot digest flesh. Besides, their teeth cannot tear out the flesh.
You may see them as friendly animals, but all naturalists will tell you how dangerous the hippos are.
Although crocodiles are fierce animals, you’ll never find them challenging a fully-grown hippo. The thick skin of the hippo offers protection from injuries, including when fighting. And for the sake of the crocodile, they cannot tear out the skin.
Diet of Hippos
Have you ever seen a hippo feeding? If yes, what was it feeding? Well, here are the answers. Hippos are entirely herbivorous. Meaning their main diet consists of grass and plant remains.
The common hippos love browsing and grazing, while the pygmy hippos love feeding on little grass, plants, fruits, roots, and ferns.
Both of these species depend entirely on vegetation and love occupying streams and rivers that are near vegetation.
Do not confuse hippos spending most of their time in the water, thinking they eat fish and other water creatures. Their digestive system cannot break down meat.
How Do Hippos Hunt Crocodiles?
Hippos attack crocodiles whenever they come across one. They do not have specific hunting techniques.
But we know that hippos are very aggressive and intimidating. Hippos have a very powerful bite and can deliver approximately 2000 pounds of force from their jaws.
But when attacking a crocodile, they normally bite and through the crocodile off the ground. Hippos are much dangerous when in a troop. A crocodile finding its way across them will never like the ending.
Hippos are much more dangerous toward crocodiles when in water than when on land.
Do Hippos and Crocodiles Fight?
Yes, they can fight, but the fight will always favor the hippo unless it is young and small compared to the crocodile.
On normal occasions, hippos and crocodiles can occupy the same habitat but will occupy different positions where they won’t interfere with the others.
Hippos are aggressive and will kill not only a crocodile but also a human if you come across it. In a fight with the crocodile, a hippo will always win because of several factors that favor the hippos, like the large body size and powerful bite.
What Eat Hippos?
Hyenas, crocodiles, and lions are the greatest threat to hippos. However, adult hippos are not easily preyed on due to their aggressive nature.
Adult hippos are so large. They are considered the third largest land mammal after white rhino and elephant. There are cases where lions successfully hippos. Such a scenario is possible if the hippo is either injured or the lions are several of them.
Humans also eat hippos. Generally, we are the greatest threat to most wild animals. Human beings kill hippos for their meat and their thick skin.
Hippos feed in herds to avoid threats from predators. In such cases, it’s difficult for a single predator to take one hippo down. They can be defensive and can kill the predator instead.
Do Hippos Eat Humans?
No, hippos do not eat humans. Hippos are herbivores, meaning their diet mainly consists of grass and plants. Their digestive system is not adapted for flesh digestion.
But killing a human being is simple. Hippos’ jaws are strong enough to cut a person into two pieces within a single bit.
Do not play near hippos, especially when they are suckling. Mother hippos are the most dangerous of them all. Hippos tend to be very protective against their young ones.
What Fruits Do Hippos Eat?
Hippos are vegetarian and eat plant-based food like fruits. The favorite fruits for the hippos are watermelons. It is simple to eat watermelons as it is simple for us to eat grapes.
The strong jaws can grind the whole watermelon in a single bite. Hippos can eat as many as 60 watermelons in a day. These creatures can be very disastrous when they come across a melon farm. If they are a handful in their herd, they can feed an entire farm of an acre.
How Much Food Does a Hippo Eat in a Day?
Adult hippos can eat approximately 90 pounds in a single night, but it depends on the size of the hippo. Being the third largest land mammal, they are very heavy consumers.
Hippos’ large body size makes them eat such an amount of food. They usually feed during the night to avoid the scorching African sun. The thick skin can make them hit up if they are not in the water.
If the habitat is peaceful, hippos can leave the water pads whenever it is cloudy. They usually do so only to play around the water and come back in case the temperature rises.
Do Crocodiles Attack and Eat Hippos?
Yes, crocodiles will attack and eat a hippo if it finds the opportunity. Usually, crocodiles attack and eat young hippos because they are easy targets to kill.
Young hippos are not defensive, and their skin is not thick enough to withstand the jaw power of a fully-grown crocodile.
You should not underestimate the power of the crocodile’s jaws. Fully grown crocodiles can deliver approximately 5000 pounds PSI. Such power is stronger than those of a hyena, Rottweiler, or even a jaguar.
For the sake of hippos, they do not love crocodile presence. Even outside the water, a hippo will always try to fight the hippo.
What Animals Eat Crocodiles?
With the strong jaw power of the crocodile, it means that crocodile-eating animals need to be much stronger or more intelligent. Among the biggest threat are humans.
Humans are the greatest threat to the crocodiles. We always hunt them for meat; some kill them for their skin.
Other animals that eat crocodiles are tigers, panthers, and leopards. Some giant snakes, like the pythons, can threaten the growing crocodiles. Snakes kill crocodiles by wrapping them around and stretching to break their bones.
Lions, conversely, eat crocodiles when they get the chance to do so. They do not always hunt them but normally kill under extreme food scarcity. Crocodiles also cannibalize other crocodiles. These reptiles are well known for consuming their kind.
The eagles also hunt small alligators. Young alligators are defenseless, allowing the eagle to attack and kill if it finds the chance.
Diet of Crocodiles
Crocodiles are carnivorous animals. They are found high in the food chain and mainly feed on small animals like fish, amphibians, reptiles, and crustaceans in their habitat.
They are also cannibals, meaning they also feed on their kind. Crocodiles eat any meat that comes their way.
Crocodiles are not leaving behind carrions left by other animals. The food scarcity does not allow them to be so choosy.
Under extreme conditions, the strong and adult crocodiles exploit the others. They also feed on hippos’ calves. A mother hippo must always defend its calf from a crocodile’s attack.
Who Would Win in a Fight: Hippo or Crocodile?
Well, it all depends on the size of the animal. But a fully-grown hippo will always win the fight with a fully-grown crocodile because hippos are much larger and stronger than crocodiles.
The hippo’s jaws can produce 5000 pounds PSI of power. This power is strong enough to break the bones of a crocodile within a short time.
Not leaving behind the tough, thick skin of hippos. The skin is strong enough to withstand the strong jaws of a crocodile.
Usually, when in the same water pad, these two animals occupy different positions to avoid conflicts.
Crocodiles tend to track young hippos to kill if they find the opportunity. But the crocodile should never mess up by coming across adult hippos.
Adult hippos normally take a turn when attacking a crocodile. The hippo bite and lifts the crocodile from the ground until it becomes helpless or even die.
Hippos are herbivores whose main diet consists of vegetation, grass, and plant products like fruits. Hippos are very large and can eat approximately 90 pounds overnight. Their big body makes them heavy consumers.
Fully-grown hippos are much more vital than crocodiles. The hippo’s jaws are powerful and can produce approximately 5000 pounds PSI. Crocodiles are carnivores. Their power cannot outdo that of a hippo.