It looks like we can add hyenas to the list of animals that can count. In fact, hyenas can count nearly as well as primates, a sure sign that these carnivorous predators are unusually intelligent. This is caused by their sophisticated, hierarchical societies in the wild.
Hyenas are among the few animal species to have unusually-complex social groupings, to the point where scientists consider them "societies" instead of packs.
Let's face it, hyena fans: hyenas usually get a bum rap, being called stupid, or "laughing idiots" from their laugh-like barks and calls (some of the blame on this may lie with Ed from The Lion King).
However, researchers have repeatedly demonstrated the cognitive abilities of hyenas rival those of monkeys. New research from Michigan State University suggests hyena intelligence evolved as a means for the spotted & striped predators to keep track of their social groups.
Yikes, live action Kenya!
Where can you see lions? Only in Kenya, apparently.
It's more highly addictive flash from the fellows who brought you Weebl and Bob.
Massai tribesmen in Kenya have only recently heard about the Sept 11th attacks on the US. To express sympathy they have given 14 cows, which they consider the most valued possession, to the people of the US. A US embassy near Tanzania received this ceremonial gift, and is not sure what to do with them.
Additional details are provided online by the BBC
Tsavo, Kenya has been known for a few things. First is the 1898 maneating frenzy by two lions (made infamous in the movie "The Ghost and the Darkness") and second are the maneless lions.
Unlike the beasts acting in the movie, the killing pair were maneless lions themselves, and originally scientists assumed they were unique outcasts, kept from prides and unable to find mates because of this emasculating lack of mane.
But new research into the Tsavo region shows that, far from being either uncommon or unsucessful, maneless males both seem to thrive and get the girls, garnering bigger prides of ladies than their maned Serengeti, and kept them alone.
Maneless males also tended to band together into larger fraternal groups or all male bands, sometimes numbering four, five animals or more animals.
Scientists are unsure of the reasons for these social differences in the Tsavo lions, and whether or not the lack of mane contributes, but maneless seems to be the more sucessful type of lion in this region.