Dassies, Rock rabbits, Rock hyrax, Cape hyrax or Klipdas.

Rock hyrax (Procavia capensis).

Now here is a dilemma for you… according to the experts and all the books, the closest living relative of the Dassie is the .. wait for it… ELEPHANT…

DSCF4943-1 tue 19-07-2011 159

Do they even look alike.? One is 4 kg in weight and the other up to 6000 kg. A big Dassie may reach 0.3 of a metre in height and the other 4 metres…

But seeing as the experts say it is I wont argue… they are found all over South Africa and almost over all of Africa south of the Sahara… A few interesting facts….

  • The forage and feed off grass and leaves. (Vegetarians)
  • They have been known to eat insects and grubs. (Not so vegetarians)
  • They will forage up to 50 metres from their homes.
  • They climb trees, and have been found eating fruit from trees.
  • They have a sentry system and when warned hurry quickly back to their refuge.
  • They even have a toilet, where the whole herd will do their business. That herd can be as big as 80 individuals.
  • And they will even take up residence next to the sea, and that is where I photographed this herd, catching a tan. (some one should tell them they need to undress to catch a tan..