Posts Tagged ‘strand wolf’

No one got this “Identify the species” query.

But those who guessed striped hyenas (Hyaena hyaena) were very close.

These are brown hyenas (Hyaena brunnea), which are in the same genus.

Brown hyenas are native to only Southern Africa, while striped hyenas have much larger range in North and East Africa and in the Middle East and South Asia.

These are the “less sexy” hyenas that don’t often appear on nature programs.

In Namibia the brown hyena is called the “strand wolf,” which in German and Afrikaans means “beach wolf.”  That’s because a large population of these hyenas has taken to living very close the Skeleton Coast, eating whatever washes up on the beach. Some of these brown hyenas have also learned to hunt Cape fur seals pups that are born on Namibia’s beaches.


But just to be fair, here’s a photo of some striped hyena cubs that are about the same age as these brown hyenas:

It’s hard to tell them apart.




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