Western Tree Hyrax, Dendrohyrax dorsalis

The western tree hyrax (Dendrohyrax dorsalis), also known as Beecroft’s tree hyrax or the western tree dassie, is a mammal that is native to Central and West Africa. Its range holds many areas including Benin, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Gambia, Liberia, Rwanda, Senegal, and Uganda. It prefers a habitat within moist savannah or rocky areas, as well as tropical and subtropical moist low-lying forests. Not much is known about this species habits, but some studies have shown that it occurs in pairs and is nocturnal.

Although there are no major threats to the western tree hyrax, it does fall prey to hunters, and the number of hyraxes in bush meat markets has been on the rise. This species is also vulnerable to habitat destruction, especially that caused by deforestation. It does occur in a few protected areas, including the National Park of Upper Niger located in Guinea. The western tree hyrax appears on the IUCN Red List with a conservation status of “Least Concern.”

Image Caption: Beecroft’s Tree Hyrax (Dendrohyrax dorsalis); Photo taken in Kole, Democratic Republic of the Congo. Credit: Valerius Tygart/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)