The family is confined to sub-Saharan Africa. Dune molerats (Bathyergus) are endemic to South Africa, occurring in coastal sandy soils of the southwestern and northern Cape and southwestern Namibia. The Cape mole-rat (Georychus) is also endemic to South Africa, mostly occurring in the Fynbos vegetation of the southwestern and eastern Cape, whereas species of the genus Cryptomys occur in western, central, and southern Africa. The silvery mole-rat (Heliophobius) occurs in eastern Africa and the naked mole-rat (Heterocephalus) in the arid regions of the Horn of Africa, namely Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia.

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