Crocuta crocuta

Spotted Hyena

Spotted Hyenas are the most common carnivores in Africa. They emit countless vocalizations to communicate with each other, the best known being "laughter", which characterizes them so much!

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Length 1,30m
Weight 50 - 70Kg
Lifespan 20 years
Diet Meat
Habitat Savannah
Reproduction 1 - 2 cubs
IUCN Red List Status
Not evaluated
Data deficient
Least concern
Near threatened
Critically endangered

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Spotted Hyena is considered the largest of all Hyena species. It has a dog-like snout, rounded ears, well-muscled neck and shoulders, and the back is slightly slanted, as the front legs are longer than the hind legs. The jaws are extremely strong. The coat is light brown with prominent black spots along the body.



Spotted Hyenas are highly sociable and live in groups called clans. But the members of a clan are only seen together in 3 situations: hunting, defending the territory and defending their community hole. The number of adults in the clan ranges from 3 to 90. The size of the territory ranges from 9 to 1000 km2. Clans defend their territories through vocal displays, scent marks (urine) and border patrols. The famous laugh is produced when individuals are nervous, challenged by a lion, or by showing submission to a member of the dominant clan.



The population of this species remains widespread in Africa, totaling 25 to 45 thousand individuals, but tends to decrease due to loss of habitat and persecution by humans, for competing with domestic cattle. The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) mitigates the conflict between humans and wildlife, building livestock sites, protecting their property from predators such as Hyenas. The Botswana Predator Conservation Trust (BPCT) directs research and education efforts to preserve Africa's great predators and their habitats, in which the Spotted Hyena is included.
In the savannas, Hyenas and lions compete directly for food, often leading to antagonistic encounters that can result in death.

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