Friday, January 23, 2009

Animal Spotlight: Spotted Hyena

Scavengers. Carnivores. Hunters. The relentless spotted hyena will stop at nothing to snag a meal, even if that means stealing it from a cheetah. Usually hunters of the night, these aggressive creatures have the ability to kill wildebeest, antelope, zebra, buffalo, and any leftovers another predator might have abandoned in the brush. The aggressive spotted hyena have also been known to kill humans, but don’t worry, safari rides are perfectly safe!

Spotted hyena have excellent sight and hearing, and can run for long distances without tiring. When these animals hunt, they chase their prey until it’s exhausted at which point they devour the catch.

Among the three species of hyena, the spotted hyena is the largest and can be found throughout much of Africa’s desert terrain. They live in clans of approximately 30-40 members, with some reaching up to 80 members.

Peculiar Facts:

• They really do laugh! Spotted hyenas of course aren’t laughing because something is funny—it’s simply the sound they make.

• Unlike many other species of game, there is no alpha male leading the spotted hyena clan—it’s the alpha female that leads the clan. The other females are also superior to all males in the clan.

Spotted Hyena milk is made up of nearly four times more protein than cow milk.

Spotted hyena can be seen on African safari tours throughout much of the continent along with other fascinating game, such as leopard, lion, and zebra. An African safari vacation is sure to excite the entire family and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Find out how you can Live the Magic of Africa with Hills of Africa Travel. Contact us today at (877) 845-4802 to learn more about our family safari and honeymoon safari itineraries.

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