However, they are found in many protected areas. The habitat of the rock hyrax varies considerably, ranging from dry savanna to dense rainforest. Class: MammaliaOrder: HyracoideaFamily:ProcaviidaeGenus: ProcaviaSpecies:capensis. The soles of the feet of the rock hyrax are moist and rubber-like, which helps proffer better grip in rocky habitats. To reproduce, one dominant male rock hyrax calls and approaches a willing female while weaving its head, with its penis and dorsal spot erect. In the early mornings they huddle together after spending the night in the same holes. These colonies can range from five to 60 individuals and may contain more than one species. Procavia capensis (Rock hyrax, Dassie) ... Distribution and habitat. Both of these characteristics make rock hyraxes very agile animals that climb well and run and jump skillfully, even on rugged and steep surfaces. In areas where humans are prevalent, especially South Africa, rock hyraxes are sometimes considered pests, as they inhabit road culverts and/or crevices in stone walls. Threats: Rock hyrax are a species of Least Concern. A dominant male controls one colony that has females and offspring. There are four toes on the front feet and three on the hind ones. In one birth, up to 6 young ones may be delivered. In general, rock hyraxes do not live in burrows. In the wild, rock hyraxes primarily feed on vegetation and are grazers and browsers. The calcium carbonate crystals were used as medicine, both by several African tribes as well as by Europeans, to treat such ailments as epilepsy, hysteria and various injuries. Gestation:Rock hyrax tends to give birth to two to four pups in the late spring/early summer after a gestation period of six to eight months. Its has strong molars for grinding vegetation, and two large incisor teeth that look like small elephant tusks. Agricultural plots that have been recently cleared are often bordered by rocks that were removed during clearing, thus providing prime habitat for rock hyraxes. A willing female backs into the male, and presses her anogenital region against his breast and flank. At the Smithsonian's National Zoo, rock hyraxes eat herbivore pellets, leafeater biscuits, root and other vegetables, and greens. Diet:Rock hyraxes are herbivores. The mature rock hyrax, according to ARKive research, weighs from around 4 to 12 pounds (1.8 to 5.4 kilograms), and its length ranges between 1.3 and 1.9 feet (39.5 and 58 centimeters). South African Animals — Animals Native to South Africa. According to the International Union of Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, the rock hyrax is a species of "Least Concern". Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute 3001 Connecticut Ave., NW Washington, DC 20008, PO Box 37012 Hyraxes are timid, but can be aggressive and noisy, making a chittering sound. The rock hyrax is a social animal, and one single community can have as many of 80 individuals living together, given that a sufficient food supply and range size are available. This gland secretes an odorous substance that is used to communicate and mark territory. The rock hyrax is found at elevations up to 4,200 metres (13,800 ft) in habitats with rock crevices allowing it to escape from predators. Habitat: Habitat ranges from savannahs to rainforests with rock structures as a prerequisite. It has a squat build, a dense, light to dark brown coat, a cream-colored underbelly, short ears and legs, and a slightly pointed head. Zoo New England gratefully acknowledges the generous support of our sponsors: © 2020 Commonwealth Zoological Corporation. Adult rock hyraxes weigh 4 to 12 pounds (2 to 5 kilograms). The soles of their feet are rubber-like and are kept moist by a glandular secretion. In some areas they are treated as pests. They may cause damage to crops. Median Life Expectancy: 5 years. The upper teeth are triangular and overgrown--believed to be remnants of tusks. Cut back on single-use goods, and find creative ways to reuse products at the end of their life cycle. Habitat/Range: The habitat of a rock hyrax is rocky and scrub areas. By James Karuga on April 25 2017 in Environment. Washington, DC 20013. It has been reported to use sentries to warn of the approach of predators. Sexual maturity for the rock hyrax begins at 17 months after birth. They use the same urinating and defecating places. Behavior:Rock hyrax live in herds of up to 50 to 80 individuals. Reproduction: Gestation period: 212–240 days; 2–4 offspring There is a small dorsal gland appearing as a patch of fur with a lighter coloration than the rest of the coat. Pups are weaned at about 10 weeks and reach sexual maturity at 2 years. Members:​ Online reservations are required for your visit. We're excited to welcome you back to the Zoo, and we've made a few changes. They are active mostly in daylight and seldom emerge from their rocky shelters during rainy periods. Hyraxes drink very little water. They range throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, Israel, Lebanon, Jordan and Syria. Dassies have a poor ability to regulate their body temperature and a low metabolic rate. Educational Activities You Can Do at Home, About the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute, Cheetah Cubdate #14: Weighing in with New Sights, Meet the New Kids on the Block at American Trail. Widely distributed in South Africa, preferring rocky areas in mountain ranges and isolated outcrops. Share the story of this animal with others. Find resources to engage learners in grades preK-12 with science, the natural world, wildlife and conservation. Their upper incisors grow continuously and look like small tusks. As land is modified, it becomes more difficult for hyraxes to find mates, food and shelter. Unlike elephants, hyrax have feet built to climb on rocky areas. This claw is for scratching and picking through its hair. Its other dietary staples in the highlands includes the giant lobelia and daisy species, while in lowlands young shoots, fruits, berries, and figs suffice as complementary foods. These colonies can range from five to 60 individuals and may contain more than one species. In these their natural habitat, they can be found sunbathing on rocks, or on some tree branches, or in pursuit of a prey on the forest floor. The basic family unit consists of an adult male and several adult females and their offspring. They are brownish gray with a creamy colored underside and long, black whiskers. The habitat of the rock hyrax varies considerably, ranging from dry savanna to dense rainforest. It is the most well-adapted and widely dispersed of all of the hyrax species. MRC 5516 During droughts, they will settle for consuming lichens, bark, and liverworts. They are excellent rock climbers due to sweat glands and muscles on their feet that function like suction cups.Size:Weight: 8 to 12 pounds (males slightly larger)Height: 8 to 12 inches (at shoulder)Length: 1 to 2 feet.