Fascinating hyena’s

The hyena is a fascinating animal, but there are quite a few misconceptions about this animal. Many people believe that hyenas are solely scavengers but this is not true as, although the hyena does scavenge, it is also a very successful hunter. The hyena hunts in much the same way as the canine (dog) family, chasing its prey down till the animal cannot run anymore and then ripping it apart. Although it hunts like a canine and looks like one, it does not belong to the canine family. It is actually in the same class as an African civet – which is closer to the cat family than the dog family. The hyena lives in a matriarchal society where the females are dominant, not the males. The males are not often seen with the females. Females are larger than males and are known to have a false penis which is in fact an extension of the clitoris. Females produce testosterone which makes them look more masculine. Generally when hyenas steal food from other predators they will finish it on the spot. But from time to time they will take their food into the water as they know that other predators won’t go into the water to fetch it there. They then return later when the threat is gone – as we witnessed a few days ago, watching this hyena stick its head in the water and pull out what’s left of a zebra’s head which it must have left there earlier that morning.