spotted hyena


an African hyena, Crocuta crocuta, having a yellowish-gray coat with brown or black spots, noted for its distinctive howl.

Nearby words

  1. spotted dick,
  2. spotted dog,
  3. spotted fever,
  4. spotted flycatcher,
  5. spotted gum,
  6. spotted joe-pye weed,
  7. spotted mackerel,
  8. spotted mist,
  9. spotted orchid,
  10. spotted sandpiper

Origin of spotted hyena

First recorded in 1775–85

Also called laughing hyena. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019