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Spotted hyena in Aberdare National Park. Javier Yanes/
Spotted hyena
'Crocuta crocuta'
Swahili: Fisi madoa

Best parks to see it: Widespread

Spotted hyenas are best known as scavengers, but they are actually very efficient predators as well, living in clans that cooperate for hunting even big prey such as wildebeest or zebra. Mainly nocturnal hunters, in many occasions they lose their kills to larger carnivores such as lions, thus giving the impression that hyenas are hanging around a lions' kill when it might be fairly the opposite.

Hyenas are usually seen as wanderers searching for food. They can eat almost anything, including animals' hides and bones. Sometimes they can be found at their underground dens with their cubs. Two related species, striped hyena ('Hyaena hyaena') and aardwolf ('Proteles cristatus') are also present in Kenya, although much more uncommon.
Spotted hyena in Aberdare National Park. J.Y./


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