Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Book Review: Who Would Win Rhino vs. Hippo (2014)

This is a Scholastic book my first grader brought home. It is one of a series of books on this subject. It is written by Jerry Palotta and illustrated by Rob Bolster.  I like the concept.  It is geared towards getting people interested in finding out about animals by supposing they should have a fight.   It does present some interesting facts.  Rhinoceros is the second largest land animal four tons, hippopotamus the third largest land mammal three tons.  Hippopotamus means water horse.  Both black rhinos and white rhinos are grey.  Hippos also come in pygmy size (a different species of hippo).  Both rhinos and hippos feed on grass.  Hippos graze at night and rhinos during the day.  Hippos have fish that eat their excrement, and clean their teeth.  Rhinos have a bird that eat tics, blood sucking flies and insect larvae and fleas, and ear wax.  Rhinos have three toes, and hippos four.   Hippos have many sharp teeth and tusks which make them a formidable creature.  They kill more humans than any other animal in Africa, and can also kill crocodiles.  The horn of the rhinoceros is not as formidable as a hippo’s teeth, but their size and speed (thirty miles per hour) make them very dangerous, especially if angry.  A human cannot outrun a rhinoceros.  Both rhinos and hippos have thick skin.  A rhino can have skin an inch and a half, while a hippo has skin over two inches thick.  The anatomy of the hippo allows it to swim with its nose, ears and eyes out of the water.  It can also sleep under water, but has to surface every four minutes to breath.  A group of rhinos is a crash of rhinos.  A group of hippos is a bloat of hippos.  The rear ends of both the hippo and rhino are very similar. 
So who would win a fight?  Speed and size or teeth?

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