Coasts of Africa and inland mountain regions
Tropical and sub-tropial regions in altitudes from 400 meters below sea level to mountainous regions 3,800 meters above sea level.
The hyrax has a muscular, massive short neck, a long and arched body, stubby legs and a tail that is not visible. They have large eyes, medium-sized ears and a truncated snout with a cleft in the upper lip. The coat is dense and consists of short underfur and long tactile guard hairs. Generally light gray or yellowish-brown to dark brown in color.
The hyrax lives in colonies of up to 80 individuals in which several families may reside. Usually, one or more members keep watch and warn others of an approaching predator or potential predator with a loud warning cry. Most hyrax are active during the morning and bask in the sun until evening when they gather in groups to feed. Hyrax do not burrow; crevices and spaces in the rocks provide them with most of the shelter they need.
Mating season for the hyrax is generally during the spring season. Gestation can last from 6-8 months. 1-2 offspring are usually produced. Sexual maturity is attained at one year.
One of the most amazing facts about this small mammal is that they are the closest living relatives of the elephant. This has been determined due to skeletal similarities.
|Did YOU Know?|
|The hyrax is the closest living relative to the Elephant!|
|Average Lifespan:||5 years|
|Wild Diet:||Fruits, vegetables, sometimes invertebrates|
|Predators:||Leopards, wild dogs, eagles, pythons, and man|
|USFWS Status:||Not Listed|
|CITES Status:||Not Listed|
|Where at the Zoo?||Small Animal Building: Temperate Zone|