Any member of three genera of small, hoofed, quadruped, rodentlike mammals (order Hyracoidea) native to Africa and extreme South Asia. Hyraxes have a squat body, a short neck and tail, and short, slender legs. Adults are 12–20 in. (30–50 cm) long and weigh 8–11 lbs (4–5 kg). They are primarily herbivores. They are agile and climb well with the aid of special pads on their feet. Their relationship to ungulates is unclear. See also cony.
Rock hyrax (Procavia capensis).—Leonard Lee Rue III
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise.
For the full entry on hyrax, visit Britannica.com.
Seen & Heard
What made you look up hyrax? Please tell us what you were reading, watching or discussing that led you here.