How Long Do Hyenas Live?

logo by Editorial Staff | Updated on August 2nd, 2022

Hyenas are feliform predatory animals in the Hyaenidae family. The family consists of four species divided into three genera. The spotted hyena is the most frequent species in the wild; aardwolves, striped hyenas, and brown hyenas are uncommon due to their smaller size, nocturnal habits, and solitary nature.

Although hyenas seem to like dogs, they are more closely linked to cats. They are found in much of Africa, as well as in Arabia and India. Spotted hyenas live in big groups called clans, which can have up to 80 members and are commanded by females.

gray and white 4 legged animal on brown soil

Average Life Expectancy

Hyenas are among the few mammals with a very low life expectancy, especially compared to other typical African animals, which have a greater life expectancy.

Hyenas should anticipate living for about 12 years. However, there have been reports of these creatures lasting far longer.

How long do wild hyenas live?

As previously stated, hyenas live 10 to 12 years in the wild. However, some have survived up to 21 years, which is unusual for them.

It’s due to their natural way of living. Although hyenas are predators, they may also be prey at times.

Hyenas’ natural adversaries are lions, which is why they may chase a lion in a pack; nonetheless, most of the time, they are killed.

In the wild, hyenas’ life span can be cut in half, but, in captivity, they can easily live double their average life expectancy.

How long do captive hyenas live?

Hyenas tend to have substantially longer lives when they are reared and spend their whole lives in captivity. The adult female spotted hyena reaches sexual maturity at the age of three, according to their species. And can survive in captivity for up to 40 years, depending on where it is kept.

The Aardwolf has a lifespan of up to 20 years, but the Brown Hyena has a lifespan of 12 years in the wild and 30 years in captivity. The spotted Hyena may live up to 25 years in captivity, whereas the striped Hyena can live in the wild for 12 years and in captivity for 24 years.


The type of hyena determines where they reside. Brown hyenas have an extremely restricted range and can only be found in Southern Africa, including the Kalahari and Namib deserts. They are generally found between the borders of Angola and Namibia and the Orange River in South Africa.

Aardwolves are divided into two populations. Southern Zambia, Angola, Mozambique, northeastern Uganda, and Somalia are home to one subspecies. The range of the other subspecies includes central Tanzania, Ethiopia, Sudan, and Egypt.

Spotted hyenas have a slightly greater range and may be found south of the Sahara Desert. They are the most abundant huge predators in the Serengeti and may be found across Sub-Saharan Africa.

The striped hyena has the greatest range of all of them. They may be found in the north and northeast Africa, the Middle East, Asia, and southern Siberia.

Hyenas are found in grasslands, forests, savannas, forest borders, sub-deserts, and mountains and can adapt to any habitat.

They have a terrific sense of humor.

Wailing sounds, howling screams, and the well-known “laughter,” which can be heard up to five kilometers away and is intended to signal other clan members of a food source, are all made by hyenas.

Diet Hyenas do not have a fussy palate.

These carnivores are among Africa’s top predators, although many people believe they are largely scavengers. On the contrary, direct kills account for around 70% of their diet.

They eat many sorts and sizes of animals, as well as carrion, bones, vegetative matter, and other animal droppings. Their jaws are among the strongest of any animal in its size. They can consume and get nutrients from skin and bones thanks to their teeth and digestive tract.

Hyena Facts You Should Know

A Hyena’s Laugh Represents Social Status.

Hyenas don’t just laugh for the sake of laughing. According to scientists, the pitch and note frequency or tone of a hyena’s laugh might indicate its age and social position.

Hyenas Rule In Female

Female spotted hyenas are more robust and ferocious than male spotted hyenas. This is due to females having three times the amount of testosterone in their systems. As a result, matriarchal spotted hyena societies exist.

Hyenas Know More Than Chimps

The size of an animal’s frontal cortex is thought to be related to its social intelligence, and hyenas have a frontal cortex comparable to that of primates. The research found that a caged pair of hyenas outperformed chimps in problem-solving and social interaction. Even more astonishing, the hyenas solved all of the difficulties in quiet, utilizing just nonverbal signs for communication.

The Penis Of The Female Spotted Hyena

Female spotted hyenas have a pseudo-penis that looks like an extended clitoris. Some pseudo-penises can reach seven inches, much beyond the normal length of the real penis. These characteristics make female sex organs essentially indistinguishable from male sex organs.

They are wonderful mothers.

A gorilla cradling her tiny infant in her arms or a cat feeding her kittens may spring to mind when thinking about nature’s wonderful moms; typically not a spotted hyena. On the other hand, hyenas are one of the best moms in the animal kingdom, putting in more energy per cub than any other terrestrial carnivore.

Hyenas have 1 to 3 small jet black cubs. Hyena babies are “precocial,” which means they are born at a more advanced stage of development, with their eyes open, teeth intact, and muscles ready to go, as opposed to many cat species, where cubs are born blind and useless for several weeks.

They are capable of counting.

According to research, spotted hyenas can count the number of other hyenas in a competing clan and select the best course of action. Similarly, after a brief census, guys wishing to join a new clan will always join the clan with the fewest other males. Although it is not calculus, spotted hyenas can count.


Editorial Staff

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