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Anat Anz. 1988;167(4):313-21.

Descriptive and functional myology of the back and hindlimb of the striped hyena (Hyaena hyaena, L. 1758).

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Department of Functional Morphology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, State University of Utrecht, The Netherlands.


The musculature of the back and hindlimb of Hyaena hyaena is described and the functional implications of some morphological aspects of muscles and skeleton are discussed. The trunck is characterized by its robustness. The thoracic cage is wide and long, the lumbar spine is short and the sublumbar musculature is less developed than in Canidae and Felidae. The well-developed gluteal muscles, M. biceps femoris and Mm. adductores are, in combination with the long os femoris, powerful stabilizers and retractors of the hindlimb. The relatively wide and flat articulation surfaces enables the transmission of large forces between the joints of the hindlimb. This morphology is considered as an adaptation to stabilizing the body while the hyena carries large and heavy load.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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