Discover Brown Hyena Fun Facts

Adult Brown Hyena The brown hyena is the rarest species of hyena in the world. They live in deserts, scrublands, and semi-deserts in Southern Africa. These hyenas can often be found foraging and hunting along coastlines. Because of this, they are also called the “strandwolf”. They live in clans, usually five to 15 individuals large, which roam over territories approaching 200 square miles.

However, while hunting and foraging, brown hyenas work alone. Their diets include fruits and vegetables, as well as eggs, fish, birds, and small mammals. They create caches of food to return to, usually returning as soon as the very next night. By eating water-rich fruit, brown hyenas are able to survive in regions arider than other hyenas are able to. They are also opportunistic eaters, often eating from other predators’ kills. Most of these large prey animals they find are antelope, zebra, or seals.



Adult Brown Hyena Walking Lions are the largest threat to brown hyenas. They often kill adults and brown hyenas are, reasonably, very cautious when approaching a site where a lion has been recently. Spotted hyenas may sometimes kill brown hyenas, but their ranges rarely overlap. Farmers also sometimes kill brown hyenas, if they perceive the hyena to be a threat. It is a myth, though, that brown hyenas are livestock killers.

A typical litter of brown hyena cubs is one to five babies. They are born blind and are completely dependent on milk for the first three Baby Brown Hyenamonths of their lives. Brown hyena clans raise their cubs communally. All females suckle cubs, even ones who aren’t their own. All clan members bring food back for cubs who are still too young to hunt for themselves. Until the cubs are 15 months old, they need to stay with a clan member. Then, they are capable of foraging and hunting on their own, but they are not fully adults. Females become mature earlier than males. Females are adults at close to two years old, but males need to wait at least another year.

Brown hyenas are very vocal with one another. They shriek to one another when a larger predator is seen approaching. They squeal when showing submission to one another and as a warning. They growl when meeting a rival from another clan. Finally, a soft call is used to call to cubs for them to return to the den.


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