Monday, April 4, 2011


Hand cut aluminum hyena pin
It's been a while since I've been asked to make a hyena, but yesterday I received an order for a pair of earrings in grey. I sell my anodized aluminum jewelry in the Tapir and Friends Animal Store (the webshop of the Tapir Preservation Fund), a marketplace devoted to raising money for tapir conservation by selling fun animal items of all species.

Many people don't care for hyenas, associating them with spooky behavior and a diet of carrion. But that doesn't mean they don't have any fans. I, for one, am fascinated by their weird lifestyle and bizarre vocalizations. For instance, did you know that they can live in groups of up to 80 which are led by females? Or that, despite looking superficially like dogs they are actually more closely related to cats?

If you like hyenas too, keep reading! It turns out that you can find some interesting hyena art if you hunt a little yourself.

Like this sculpture from Fenrislorsrai's etsy shop. It's rare to see a hyena depicted as doing anything other than fighting over a scrap of bone, but here's one engaged in child rearing! I like their expressive ears.

There's also this Victorian illustration from 1894, found in Petite Poulailler's Zibbet shop, which shows some very fluffy hyenas in a more traditional manner. Funny how the artist took more care with the ruin in the background than he did with the ribcage that his subjects are fighting over.

If you want to show off your hyena pride on a wall or laptop, there's always the decal option. I can honestly say this is the first vinyl decal I've ever seen of this particular animal! It's from Lunar Scream's Artfire shop.

Or maybe you don't have room for one of the above options? There's always this tiny replica, also available in the Tapir and Friends Animal Store.

Happy hyena Monday, everyone!



  1. I learn the most interesting things here! I definitely didn't know they were more feline than canine. Fascinating creatures - I seem to remember that there are a lot of unique reproductive features about them too. Tenacious little critters, gotta love 'em.

  2. Very cool. I am also a huge fan of hyenas.

    My earliest memory of heynas are hearing them yap along the boundary of camps, in the Kruger National Park, during the night, because people feed them scraps.

    A very eerie but beautiful sound and one I associate strongly with the African night.

  3. Thanks, Tatty!

    Yeah, a lot of strange reproductive features! Some day I'll have to do a whole post about their odd mating habits and bizarre genitalia! ;)

  4. well, who would have ever thought hyenas could be so cute!! hahaha! Thank you so much for including my antique (and fluffy!!) hyena engraving xo karen


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