oa Journal of the Entomological Society of Southern Africa - Lice of the hyraxes, especially Procavia capensis

Volume 8, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 0013-8789



The Procaviidae (hyraxes, dassies or rock-rabbits) have persisted with very little modification since the Upper Eocene period. This same conservatism has caused the modern members of the group to be exceedingly hard to classify satisfactorily, so that few mammalogists are agreed as to the number of genera which should be recognised. But Bedford (1932), who was the first author to make a systematic study of the lice of the South African hyraxes, made an interesting and significant discovery, namely, that certain of these lice are apparently more specific in their choice of host than are any other known lice, occurring each on one of the forms attributed to Procavia capensis or Heterohyrax syriacus and not on other forms of these same species.

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