You might think there is only one type of hyena, but no, there's more! There are two different types of hyenas: brown hyenas and Aardwolf hyenas. These hyenas look like dogs, but they are cat-like carnivores. A carnivore is an animal that only eats meat. Brown hyenas can easily digest skin and bones with their sharp teeth. They scavenge for lions that have previously been killed by other carnivores or hunt for their own prey.
Aardwolf hyenas, named for the Afrikaans word for “earth-wolf,” are insect eaters. They use their sticky tongues to pick up insects and use their teeth to harvest more than 200,000 termites per night.
Hyenas spread through the Middle East and South Asia; they can be found in grassland or savanna habitats. They live in clans of 80 or more, sharing the same home. Hyenas also have elaborate scent marking rituals. This helps them familiarize with each other and maintain their social systems. Hyenas sniff each other's heads and bodies, which can engage them in ritual fighting. Hyenas spines slope down towards their tails.
These two hyenas may share a habitat and similar social systems, but the aardwolf and brown hyenas differ in their diet. You may have been surprised to find that the Aardwolf hyena is an insect eater. With all the different types of hyenas in the world, these animals are sure to have many more surprises in store.
[Source: The Encyclopedia of Mammals]