26 March 2013

Rock Dassie aggression

The Rock Dassie or Rock Hyrax (Procavia capensis) is a common widespread small mammal living in Southern Africa. It is mostly seen sitting in the warm sun on a rock somewhere. There are no rocks for them to sit on where I live but they have adapted well to sunning themselves when perched on a tree or in shrubbery.

Most people don't know it but the Dassie is the closest living relative to the African Elephant. When an elephant gets aggressive the only sensible reaction is to retreat quickly and just get away. Well the closest living relative to an elephant got a bit upset and suddely started "barking" and making this aggressive face. The sudden bark gave me a bit of a fright and by the second one I was laughing a bit too much to have a steady camera and take a picture. Luckily it carried on with its barking and this is what an angry Dassie looks like. I am glad it was not its cousin the elephant.