For so many years there has been confusion between similar-looking animals, such as cheetah and leopard, crocodile and alligator, and African wild dog and hyena. We will focus here on the difference between wild dog and hyena.
What is an African Wild Dog?
The African wild dog known as the painted wolf, or hunting dog is a canine native to Sub-Saharan Africa. It is the most significant first canine in Africa and the only extant member of the Lycaon genus. These animals inhabit the open plains and woodlands of sub- Saharan Africa.
What is a Hyena?
Hyenas are large dog-like carnivores. They live in savannas, grasslands, sub-deserts, and forests of Africa and Asia. Four types of hyenas differ in size and eating habits. The four species are spotted brown, striped, and aardwolf.
African Wild Dog Size Comparison:
African wild dogs can reach the height of 30 inches at the shoulder and weigh between 55 and 70 pounds. They have long legs, strong jaws and the body is covered with fur which has irregular patches of red, brown, black, yellow, and white color.
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Hyenas vary in size; the most abundant species are spotted hyenas that measure 35 inches in height and weigh around 90 pounds. The smallest species are the aardwolf with 20 inches in height and 60 pounds in weight. Female hyenas are larger and dominant than males.
Major Difference Between Wild Dog and Hyena:
African Wild Dog Reproduction:
The mating occurs between a dominant pair in the pack. Female has one little per year. Several cubs per litter can range from 2 to 20. Generally, females give birth to 10 pups; there are twice as many males than females in the offspring. All the members of the group nurse the baby.
The gestation period lasts for 90 to 110 days in hyenas. One female gets 2 to 4 cubs and takes care of them in the special den reserved only for mother and cubs for four weeks.
Hyenas live in territorial and large groups that can consist of up to 80 members. Aardwolf are solitary animals that gather only during the mating season.
Hyenas mark their territory with white droppings produced in the anal glands. This substance has a strong smell, and it informs another hyena that the area is already occupied.
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African Wild Dog Facts:
- The African wild dog is a very talented and social animal.
- An African wild dog’s colourful and erratic coat is dappled in shades of brown, black and light brown.
- It has a large, rounded bat-like tail ear and shady brown loop around its eyes.
- The African Wild Dogs hunt antelopes and any other larger prey, mainly if the victim is alone or wounded.
- African wild dogs have a terrible reputation as destructive, nasty killers.
- They survive and hunt in groups called packs.
- It is interesting to note that unlike other predatory animals, they live in good co-operation with each other.
- Like most predators, the African wild dog has a vital function in eliminating ill and weak animals.
- These aids in keeping usual stability in nature, and in the long run, maintain the prey variety.
- They prefer arid zones and Savannas.
- African wild dogs are endangered species. Their population is decreasing significantly due to the extensive killing of farmers who want to protect their livestock.
- Besides that, the dogs are also prone to diseases that affect domestic animals. Moreover, habitats negatively affect their survival.
- African dogs can run 35 miles per hour and travel great distances during the day.
- They are territorial animals, and the average size of the pack’s territory is 1500 square kilometres.
Interesting Facts About Hyena:
- One of the least known facts about Hyena is that they are immensely talented hunters and not just cunning scavengers.
- For centuries, the Hyena was associated with ill-fate and a bad omen.
- Because when they hunt and chase prey, the sounds they make to call each other sounds very spooky and unsettling.
- Also, the female dappled hyenas have extremely abnormal genitalia that looks like that of a male.
- These peculiar facts of the Hyena led the ancient people to believe that it indicated disorder or an effort of the devil.
- Hyenas have unique and powerful bone-crushing teeth.
- Great canines are present on the front of its jaw and at the back of the mouth.
- Where they have more power are huge carnassial that mashes the whole bones of prey.
- So, a large amount of bone is consumed by the Hyena, which gives its dung a pale white color.
African Hunting Dog vs Hyena: Fight Comparison
In a fight between a hyena and African wild dog, Hyena has higher chances of winning. Hyenas have much larger teeth and a mighty jaw. They are also known to drive small groups of lions off a kill. Wild dogs are also very unlikely to be solitary, and their strength is in their unity.
An African wild dog is often a meal of Hyena as they are scavengers by nature. Moreover, hyenas are not from the dog or cat family, but they belong in a category of their own. Although wild dogs are also great hunters and fighters, their jaws and teeth do not have the bite force of the Hyena.
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