A Clan of Hyenas


Hyena Cackle_2015_08_21_9194-3

A clan of Spotted Hyenas (Crocuta crocuta) on the hunt, or looking for opportunity knocking, in the morning. Just a couple of hundred metres away there was a pride of lions on the prowl across the flood plain, possibly looking for breakfast, and the Hyenas were most probably looking to take their chances. They do hunt. Richard Estes (The Behaviour Guide to African Mammals) suggests Hyenas will ‘scavenge whenever possible and as a predator will always select the most easily captured prey.’ Yet a lone Hyena is capable of running down and killing a medium sized antelope. It is unusual to see more than two Hyenas foraging like this. On a lighter note, is this a cackle or a clan of hyenas?.
(Canon EOS 5D Mark III / EF100-400mm IS II USM; 1/200 sec; f/5.0; ISO 1250; 55mm)

Picture ©2015 Andrew Field – Simply Wild Photography

Photography Quotes

The American photo journalist Dorothea Lange followed a varied career during which she became an influential documentary photographer and is best known for her American Depression-era work for the Administration, humanizing the consequences of the Great Depression. She influenced the development of documentary photography as we know it today. After the destruction of Pearl Harbour, Lange covered the internment of the Japanese community on the West coast of America. In 1945, she was invited by Ansel Adams to accept a position as faculty at the first fine art photography department at the California School of Fine Arts. She later set up the publication Aperture. Lange is attributed with this quotation:

“My own approach is based upon three considerations: First, hands off! Whenever I photograph I do not molest or tamper with or arrange; Second, a sense of place. I try to picture as part of its surroundings, as having roots; Third, a sense of time. Whatever I photograph, I try to show as having its position in the past or in the present.”

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3 thoughts on “A Clan of Hyenas

  1. Andrew, I really like your work, great images that have me in envy of you (at least in admiration, nope, it’s envy).

    Your question re. cackle or clan of Hyenas drove me to Google and it’s not definitive. Apparently Spotted Hyenas in a group are called a clan by zoologists and sometimes in poetry called a cackle (which is also a secondary name for a group of Crows in lieu of a “murder of crows”),

    1. Thank you Gary for your comments… To me the descriptive ‘clan’ has more dignity for this often reviled creature.

  2. I always think they look as though they are sloping around looking for something to make trouble. Interesting quote Andy.

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