Saturday, September 13, 2014

Creature Feature #329: Hyrax

The little Hyrax is not a rodent, despite her general appearance, but is in fact more closely related to the elephant and the manatee. She is a relatively primative mammal, with poor internal thermoregulartion and thus keeps warm by basking in the sun and sharing body warmth with her family. She has four toes on her front feet and three on the back, each equipped with hoof-like nails. The pads of her feet are rubbery and equipped with sweat glands to help her scramble over the rocks on which she lives. She follows a herbivorous diet and has a multi-chambered, complex stomach that allows the food to be broken down by symbiotic bacteria - in a similar manner to the ungulates.

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