Rock Hyrax

The Rock Hyrax is a small mammal, about twenty inches long that weighs in about 7 pounds when fully mature.
It has a short brown coat that is coarse in nature, with a creamy colored underbelly, and a small black dorsal patch that covers a single scent gland.

They are plump looking with shorter thin legs and a small tail.

The head is thick as well and pointy looking with tiny round ears and longer black whiskers that look much like a cats.

The Hyrax, while looking simple is a good fighter
The Hyrax, while looking simple is a good fighter

The males will have four sharp tusks, that are interlocking, and can be deadly when used in self defense.

They have four toes on the front feet and three on the back, which have flat nails that look like hooves.

They also have special muscles in their feet, working a lot like suction cups so they can grip surfaces to climb them.

The Rock Hyrax lives in small communities throughout central Africa, although some colonies can be found throughout north Africa, Israel and Syria.

They prefer rocky areas that are covered in scrub brush, where they take shelter under rocks, in small crevices or by digging a burrow, which they hide in.

When the day is overcast or lacks light, they are loathe to leave their shelters, so that when it is chilly, or overcast, particularly on a rainy day, they will remain inside and may do so for the entire rainy season.

As many as sixty of them live in the colony, depending on the environment and habitat, with one alpha or territorial male, many adult females and their young.

The male is the leader and will also guard the community, keeping watch from a higher area while the others feed.
Other males will sometimes live within the community in a bachelor group.

The Hyrax has a high pitched alarm call but they also have as many as twenty other vocal calls for communicating to each other and with their young.

The hyrax looks quite unobtrusive, but is in fact a voracious fighter when threatened, and are very agile, able to run up a completely smooth rock face with no difficulty at all.

They will bear two to four young, in small crevices that are used as nests, and nurse them til about three months old.
In the wild the Hyrax will live 10 to 12 years.

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