“Species of hippo ranged across pre-historic Europe, including the giant Hippopotamus antiquus a huge animal which often weighed up to a. Fossils of the European Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus antiquus) first appear in sediments million years old, at the dawn of the Pleistocene. †Hippopotamus antiquus Desmarest (hippo). Osteichthyes – Theriiformes – Synonym: Hippopotamus tiberinus Mazza (taxon ). Belongs to.

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An enormous 64 foot long hippopotamus makes its way slowly down the River Thames. But this oversized, flat bottomed piece hippopotamud art is not in isolation. Part of the festival includes a talk by Madame Trowel Blazer herself, Victoria Herridgeabout the prehistoric Thames and the real hippopotamuses that lived there aroundyears ago.

Category:Hippopotamus antiquus

Along with giant Straight Tusked elephants Palaeoloxodon antiquusan extinct type of rhinoceros Stephanorhinus sp.

These were the modern hippos which are still around today, Hippopotamus amphibius.

antiqquus There was another species of hippo that once lived in Britain, and Europe. An extinct hippo, that was the largest river horse ever to have existed.

A truly gorgeous fossil skeleton of Hippopotamus antiquus at Florence Palaeontology Museum Image from here. Fossils of the European Hippopotamus Hippopotamus antiquus first appear in sediments 1. This big beast is slightly younger than the still extant Hippopotamus amphibius whose fossils are found hippopotamjs to around 2 million years ago.

Along with a few minor differences in the teeth, the size tells the species apart from one another; H. It is unsure why this species grew bigger than the hippos you see today. With more resources around to support animals they can get bigger. Equally, gippopotamus may have been through sexual selection: Males will fight for territory. It may be that antiquuz European Hippo had larger male bulls which spread through the population.


Whatever the reason, this was a very successful species and was around for almost 2million years. This big hippo first hippopotamis in Britain during the early Middle Pleistocene, aroundyears ago until aroundyears ago. Named after the site, Cromer in Norfolk, where lots of fossils from this time were found, the Cromerian is one of the more famous early Pleistocene times.

This was mainly a warm interglacial time although as typical of the Pleistocene, it was not many years of warmth; the climate dipped and peaked as glaciers melted and grew. The English Channel was non-existent. Instead fertile grasslands spread from the south hkppopotamus to mainland Europe.

Animals migrated freely back and forth up into Britain, and back down again to suit their needs.

With extreme cold glacial times following the Cromerian, the European Hippopotamus moved out of Britain, never to return. It would be anotheryears before a hippopotamus were to waddle into Britain again.

There is an odd, possible synonym to our big hippo; Hippopotamus major. There is not a lot of information is out about this species; if it is a separate antjquus. It is nippopotamus it is a sub-species like the Siberian Tiger is a sub species of tiger. It may even be the same species as H. With not a lot of fossils to assess and compare, it is difficult for us to determine.


Category:Hippopotamus antiquus – Wikimedia Commons

Hippopotamus antiquus survived in Europe for many years, happily living in Hippopotamjs, Greece, and Germany. It is a slight irony, that this, the biggest species of hippo spawned the smallest species: We are unsure as to the main reason for antiquys extinction; possible changes in environment, or a fall in temperatures. There were extreme climatic changes throughout most of the Pleistocene and the European Hippo appears to have become extinct at the same time of many of the other mega-herbivores.

This was the biggest species of hippo to evolve, and was a very successful animal throughout Europe.

The Eruopean Hippo would be a delight to see today. Perhaps Florentijn Hofman and his giant wooden hippo should begin touring through Europe, retracing the steps of this lost giant. To find out more about the other hippopotamus that lived in Britain, click here. Island hopping hippos TwilightBeasts. You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Twitter hippopofamus. You are commenting using your Facebook account.

Fossilworks: Hippopotamus antiquus

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