New Hyena Den!

There is always plenty of excitement in the air when our guides and trackers discover a new hyena den, especially one that is close to the road and has easy access. There is almost always activity at a den so it means great viewing for guests on safari, but it is also fascinating to witness the family structure of a hyena clan.

A hyena clan is a completely female dominated family structure. Even the highest ranking male hyena is lower than the lowest ranking female. The males are smaller and are not always allowed near the actual holes of the den, so often they are found loitering outside like banished children.

A den consists of a hole or holes in an old disused termite mound or in the ground, and often hyenas utilise old drain pipes in more built up reserves. There is usually a mix of cub age groups, with the smallest ones being totally black and looking more like grizzly bears than any sort of hyena.

As the cubs get bigger they start to develop spots and their coats lighten up. When the mothers go out to hunt or scavenge they will often leave the cubs alone, well hidden inside the den or will have a lower ranking female to babysit. This particular den has 3 gorgeous little black babes and 4 older siblings who are just developing their spots and are really inquisitive.

They have given plenty of hours of entertainment and education to our guests, and we look forward to watching their progress.

 

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