Rock Hyrax Fact Sheet

Common Name:

Rock Hyrax, Cape Hyrax, Rock Rabbit

Scientific Name:

Procavia capensis

Wild Status:

Least Concern


Rocky Outcrops


Multiple African Countries


Dwelling holes

Life Span:

up to 12 years


up to 12lbs and 22 inches long

Cool Facts:

  • The rock hyrax is one of the closest living relative of the elephant.
  • They have specialized feet that curve and create suction, helping them climb rocks and steep surfaces.
  • Rock hyraxes are the main source of food for Verreaux eagles.
  • Compared to other hyrax species, rock hyraxes are the most rare of hyraxes.
  • Rock hyraxes don't just live along rocks. They live within scrub-covered areas and will live in burrows if rock shelters are unavailable.


Rock hyraxes are medium-sized mammals with small rounded ears, a pointed snout, small head, and short tail. They are generally dark brown to light gray in color, depending on their environment. Dark gray fur surrounds their forehead and muzzle and have long, black whiskers. Rock hyraxes have elongated, sharp, and curved upper incisors that resemble small tusks. They have a rounded tail-end and short legs. Their toes are rounded and have specialized foot pads that are soft and rounded.

Taxonomic Breakdown:

Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Mammalia Order: Hyracoidea Family: Procaviidae Genus: Procavia Species: P. capensis

Conservation & Helping:

The rock hyrax is listed as an animal of least concern on the IUCN Red List.

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