When you think of the Spotted Hyena, what immediately jumps to mind? Is it of a majestic animal atop a termite mound taking in the first rays of sunlight? Is it a sleek & elegant predator sprinting after prey in the grasslands of the Masai Mara? Is it a caring mother nurturing her new born cubs or is it an animal filled with mischief and joy interacting with other members of the family?
I would say that few of you considers the above mentioned to be attributes given to the Spotted Hyena. Surely not, right? Movies, novels & the general opinion says otherwise.
Terms that tend to come to mind would be lowly scavenger unable to hunt for itself. Dirty mangy beasts carrying diseases. Lazy. Ugly. Savage.
Does this sound about right? Well, in this post I’ll not try and convince you to feel otherwise about them. I merely want to tell you more about this fascinating animal, sharing my experience, personal accounts & a few bits of information from some clever people.
I think the Spotted Hyena has been made most famous by a film we all know & love – The Lion King. This film however has not done the hyenas reputation much good. Many of us have grown up thinking very little of this rather odd-looking, eery animal.
From personal experience and encounters I can however tell you a very different story. It’s a story describing a true predator, an animal that’s evolved to make the most out of every opportunity it’s faced with. An animal that’s highly social and incredibly well organised as a clan and family. I’ll tell you about an animal that’ll fight for it’s territory and an animal that takes care of their young like few others will. You’ll also learn about an animal that’s incredibly strange with mannerisms and characteristics that’ll leave you pondering the matter of the subject.
Please remember, this is not a scientific report, just some good information to make your next safari and experience with the Spotted Hyena a more insightful experience.