Surprisingly, among large animals, the one that kills the most people in Africa is the hippo. There are hundreds of hippo fatalities reported per year, but it is believed that many more go unreported. The mosquito is believed to be the most dangerous animal of any size in Africa, because it spreads of malaria and other diseases. Malaria alone kills more than a million Africans annually.
More about hippos:
- Hippos are extremely territorial. They are the second-largest land animal in Africa, behind only the African elephant, and they have been known to trample anything that comes into their territory, including water buffaloes (the second most dangerous large animal in Africa), crocodiles and humans.
- The average hippo can run as fast as 20 miles per hour (32 kph). That's pretty impressive for an animal that weighs about 8,000 pounds (about 3,600 kg) and can have canine teeth that are up to 20 inches (50 cm) in length.
- The hippo's closest relative in the animal kingdom is the whale.