No matter how much we have learned about nature, this wonderful planet never ceases to amaze us with its incredible abundance and stunning beauty. There are plenty of charming creatures on Earth that could capture our hearts at very first sight, and these adorable little guys right here are an outstanding example. Meet the aardwolf, the cutest “wolf” you probably never heard of.
Image source: Hennie van Heerden
The name aardwolf means “earth-wolf” in Afrikaans and Dutch. They are mostly found in the shrublands of East and Southern Africa.
Image source: Animals-Safaris
Each adult aardwolf is about 22 to 31 in (55 to 80 cm) long (including its tail), 16 to 20 in (40 to 50 cm) tall, and often weighs 15–22 lb (7 – 10 kg).
Image source: arkive
All aardwolves are nocturnal and a bit shy, they often sleep in underground burrows during the day and only come out to search for food when the night falls. And the funny thing is, they don’t even try to dig these holes themselves. These quick-witted critters usually use abandoned burrows that other animals leave behind. Pretty smart, right?
Image source: Daryl Balfour
These wild animals come from the Hyaenidae – the same family as the hyena and they mainly feed on termites, that’s why people also call them the “termite-eating hyena”. They are impressive great at hunting insects. In fact, a single aardwolf could catch up to 300,000 termites in only one night by using its super long and sticky tongue.
Image source: Nigel J Dennis
In addition to being cute, they are pretty loyal as well. Aardwolves are monogamous, which means they often stick with the same partner for their entire life.
Image source: Cincinnati zoo
Thankfully, this species’ population is quite stable at this moment. It has been rated as “least concern” by the IUCN.
Image source: Ohange Namibia Lodge
If you find these guys endearing as we do, please share this post with your loved ones!
H/T: Bored Panda