Obituaries

Harar Hyenas:Not biting the hand that feeds them

Here in this medieval city in eastern Ethiopia, the humans and the hyenas are living in peace.

The truce began two centuries ago (or so the story goes) during a time of great famine.

There was drought in the hills where the wildlife roamed, and hungry hyenas had sneaked into Harar and eaten people.

Distressed, the town’s Muslim saints convened a meeting on a nearby mountaintop. There, they devised a solution: The people would feed the hyenas porridge if the hyenas would stop their attacks.

The plan worked, and a strange, symbiotic relationship was born.

City leaders went on to create holes in the sand-colored stone walls that surround Harar to give the hyenas nightly access to the town’s garbage. And in the 1960s, a farmer started feeding hyenas scraps of meat (goat, donkey, sometimes camel) to keep them away from his livestock.

 

Click here for full story

Comments

comments

About the author

admin

Leave a Comment