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Hyena Interaction

Hyena Interaction
Photo Information
Copyright: Anna Eksteen (Miss_Piggy) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2285 W: 5 N: 5300] (18714)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-10-21
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Sony Cybershot DSC H9, Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 15x Optical zoom, Digital ISO 250
Exposure: f/4.5, 1/125 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Animals' Behavior, part one [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2013-08-09 8:00
Viewed: 4480
Points: 58
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Spotted Hyena / Crocuta crocuta

I have come to realise that photographing various kinds of animals whether it being birds, mammals, insects or reptiles, creates a different emotion or excitement within me, as I am sure many of you feel the same. I am also sure that you will agree that when interaction takes place in front, or close to you, the excitement raises and the adrenalin goes into overdrive.

These two hyenas were photographed in the golden light of the late afternoon. They were right next to our vehicle and it looked like it was the alpha female interacting with one of the other animals from the pack. It was very thrilling to see the contact between them and at the same time to hear the sounds they were making.

It is most well known that they make a noise that sounds like a person laughing hysterically. It actually sounds really similar to a person's laugh, but the hyenas don't make the noise because they think something is funny.

The "laughing" is actually a noise they make when they are excited or frightened. They may laugh when finding food or when being chased, and they can hear each other's laughs from up to three miles away. Hyenas make a lot of other noises too. They are very vocal animals, and it helps them communicate with each other.

General Overview
Nature's garbage remover is an apt label for the spotted hyaena, which has an astonishing appetite. It consumes its own prey and scavenged carrion with equal gusto and relish, swallowing large chunks of meat noisily and voraciously. Packs of hyaenas have been known to dig up and eat human corpses, and examinations of stomach contents have turned up such bizarre items as the sole of a shoe, nails, elephant skin, rope and a corned beef tin.

The shoulders and sloping back are supported in front by extremely powerful forelegs capable of running fast, knocking down prey and carrying it off for home consumption. Its heavy teeth and jaws can shred tough carcasses in minutes, splintering bones that defeat all other carnivores; its digestive system processes bone, sinew and hide with ease.

These powerfully built animals are the second largest four-legged hunters in Africa - next to their mortal enemies - lions. They are often known as scavengers, eating the leftovers of other predators. But they are actually extremely intelligent and successful pack hunters, taking down various plains game. Being omnivores, they will also eat birds, lizards, snakes, insects and plants.

With lethal force in their bite combined with their supremely strong teeth, a hyena can even devour and digest an elephant's bones. Getting in a fight with a hyena is no laughing matter!

The jaws of the spotted hyena are said to be the strongest in the entire animal kingdom, although there is some debate whether or not the Tasmanian Devil has stronger jaws proportional to its size. The hyena is capable of crushing and grinding even the largest and thickest bones. The anterior molars can generate a pressure of 800kg.

Taken from: Animals of the Kruger Park and Lowveld - Heritage Publishing.

I hope you enjoyed looking at this photo as much as I took pleasure in taking it.

ramthakur, Silvio2006, Hotelcalifornia, aruntp, josediogo1958, arindammitra89, CeltickRanger, energypolice, pierrefonds, Alex99, marius-secan, Ingrid1, Adanac, Hormon_Manyer, waylim has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Very powerful image of interacting Hyenas, Anna. The one with bared fangs looks really menacing. A fine capture from your archives.
'Laughing like a hyena' is an expression that sometimes suits some people we know when we hear them laughing. You have cleared the misconception that Hyenas 'laugh'.
Thanks and best regards.

Ciao Anna, fantastic action shoot, splendid light, excellent clarity and wonderful colors, very well done, my friend, have a good week end, ciao Silvio

Hello Anna,
Beautiful light on subjects.Great moment of their activities in their natural habitat.
I like detailed note.
Thanks for sharing,
Kind regards,

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2013-08-09 13:13]

Hi Anna,great timing to take this nice capture,a specie not often seen on TN,i seen my first yena in Gambia this winter,and i never thought that these animals were so big.Perfect capture whit a special warm light and great colors too,i like it!Have a nice weekend and thanks,Luciano

  • Great 
  • aruntp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 590 W: 1 N: 357] (5379)
  • [2013-08-09 23:27]

beautiful wild life image of Hynaes. interesting emotion shown by them. good work.

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2013-08-10 2:15]

Hello Anna.
shot of this Hyensa showing very sharp details. I like the light and the fine colours. Pleasant background too and an excellent composition. I like it very much.Regards Siggi

Good morning Anna
Great moment of this two in the late afternoon.Great pose,wonderful colours,light and details.Thank You.
Have a great WE!
Kind regards

hallo Anna
super good picture with many details to see
i like this picture
the colours and light are beautiful
thanks greeting lou

Hello Anna,
A very beautiful wildlife photography.It tells us a story.
Great natural color combination and details.Nice framing and timing.
Nice point of view.Thanks for sharing.


Hello Anna

Photo shot in the action of the Hyenas with a
very beautiful warm light in the background,
excellent focus, sharpness, and details, TFS


nice capture, great light, greetings Ori

Hello Anna,
Wonderful catch in the late afternoon light,fine details and the moment you captured is really remarkable.

Hello Anna,
Very powerful image of interacting Hyenas.
Light, colour and sharpness is excellent.
Low PoV is also very effective.
best wishes,

Hello Anna,
Excellent photograph of Hyena Interaction, excellent sharpness and details, outstanding composition, outstanding background and excellent lighting.
Thanks for sharing,

Hi Anna,

You have captured well the interaction between th hyena. The point of view is showing the details and colours of the Hyenas. The good luminosity is bringing out the colours. Have a nice day.


  • Great 
  • iti Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 577 W: 0 N: 650] (7939)
  • [2013-08-14 12:23]

Hi Anna,
Excellent shot and with a very good moment captured.
Gorgeous light and colours.
Regards Jiri.

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2013-08-15 3:22]

Hi Anna.
I like your picture of a nice nature active scene. Captured moment is so attractive and shows expressive relations between animals. Evening sunlight, warm tint of colours decorate the image nicely too. Excellent wild picture. TFS and best regards.

hello my friend Anna!
what a great moment, the Africa wild life, great photo shot!
regards Nasos

Hello Anna,
Thanks for visiting my gallery. A top quality image!!! One of the most interesting species in action. The details, focus and sharpness are splendid. Lovely contrast against the background. Fantastic details and clarity.

My dear Anna,
I agree with you, hence my particular interest in Animals' Behaviour; and I have added your work to this theme.

This interaction is highly interesting, I even have seen proper submission, ie showing the belly and neck...

I always wonder why they have evolved to look always so scruffy. Have you ever noticed an animal grooming itself? I have not :-)

The details you are able to present are amazing including the huge paws. The strength of the jaws without any doubt enabling them to crunch even elephant bones...

Your notes are terrific. Yes, the hysterical laughter gives everybody goose pimples at night.
Thanks for sharing.
Warm greetings from the Tzaneen Dam in Limpopo, South Africa

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2013-08-17 3:55]

Hello Anna
they look so angry and ferocious. It is such an opportunity for you to enjoy the natural heritage of your place. Thanks for sharing the view with us, as it is not that easy to be there and to take photos of these special and unique animals.


Ciao Anna. Colours and light amazing! Great time for the interesting situation. TFS.


  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2013-08-21 10:52]

Hello Anna,
Missed this beauty while I was on holiday.
Fantastic action photo of these Hyenas in splendid warm colours and great sharpness. Taken from a good low POV.

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2013-08-31 19:26]

Hello Anna,
When I look at this photo of the two Hyena interacting with each other my first thought is "extremely powerful jaws". You can tell just by looking at them that this is one animal you wouldn't want to clamp down on you with those powerful jaws and large canine teeth.
I never realized it before how much their heads resemble that of a Pit Bulls. If it wasn't for the raised mane on it's back and of course it's large size, the one on the left could easily be mistaken for one from this angle. Great work!!

Hi Anna,
Great capture of the scene of two Hyenas expressing hostility by showing their sharp teeth to each other though I don't like hyenas. Marvellous composition with nice details and natural colors. Well done, and thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2013-09-23 13:40]

Hello Anna,
Such amazing animals these are even though they are much maligned. Great camera work Anna gives us a great view of these two having a tiff.

Hello Anna,
Amazing photo of the natural behavior of the hyenas.

Hi Anna,
Beautiful action shot. Your timing was perfect to capture the details of the alpha female's teeth, and your composition's pleasant, too, everything's on the rightest place. You had spectacular lights also, and I love your white balance settings. An exceptional, rarely seen image with an informative, descriptive note. Thanks and congratulations.
Best regards, László

  • Great 
  • waylim Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 296 W: 8 N: 489] (1765)
  • [2014-01-09 19:30]

Hi agian,

I have also seen a few Hyenas in my Kenya trip. Since they are not very pleasant to look at and scavenger, we tend to depict them as bad guys :) I guess they do their part in the circle of life.

I heard them at night while camping, they sounded more like crying than laughing.

Once again, not much to say about the photo quality, good as always, my appreciation.


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