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African Hunting Dog ....... by jdmphotography

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The African Wild Dog is a carnivorous mammal of the Canidae family, found only in Africa, especially in scrub savanna and other lightly wooded areas.

It is also called the Painted Hunting Dog, African Hunting Dog, the Cape Hunting Dog, the Spotted Dog, or the Painted Wolf in English.

The African Wild Dog hunts in packs. Like most members of the dog family, it is a cursorial hunter, meaning that it pursues its prey in a long, open chase. Nearly 80% of all hunts end in a kill. Members of a pack vocalize to help coordinate their movements. Its voice is characterized by an unusual chirping or squeaking sound, similar to a bird.

After a successful hunt, hunters regurgitate meat for those that remained at the den during the hunt, such as the dominant female and the pups. They will also feed other pack members, such as the sick, injured, or very old that cannot keep up.

The African Wild Dog’s main prey varies among populations but always centers around medium-sized ungulates, such as the Impala. While the vast majority of its diet is made up of mammal prey, it sometimes hunts large birds, especially Ostriches.

A few packs will also include large animals in their prey, such as wildebeests and zebras. Hunting larger prey requires a closely coordinated attack, beginning with a rapid charge to stampede the herd. One African Wild Dog then grabs the victim’s tail, while another attacks the upper lip, and the remainder disembowel the animal while it is immobilised. This behaviour is also used on other large dangerous prey, such as the warthog, the African Buffalo, giraffe calves, and large antelope—even the one-ton Giant Eland. The dogs often eat their prey while it is still alive. This disemboweling was a reason to regard the African Wild Dog as repulsive, but recent studies have shown that prey of the African Wild Dog die more quickly than prey of the lion and the leopard, which kill their prey by grabbing the throat and suffocating the animal.

Remarkably, this large-animal hunting tactic appears to be a learned behavior, passed on from generation to generation within specific hunting packs, rather than an instinctive behaviour found commonly within the species. Some studies have also shown that other information, such as the location of watering holes, may be passed on in a similar fashion.

The African Wild Dog is endangered by habitat loss and hunting.

It uses very large territories (and so can persist only in large wildlife protected areas), and it is strongly affected by competition with larger carnivores that rely on the same prey base, particularly the lion and the Spotted Hyena. Lions often will kill as many wild dogs as they can but do not eat them. Hyenas usually follow them to steal their kills. One on one the hyena is much more powerful than the Wild Dog but a large group of Wild Dogs can successfully chase off a small number of hyenas because of their teamwork.

It is also killed by livestock herders and game hunters, though it is typically no more (perhaps less) persecuted than other carnivores that pose more threat to livestock. Most of Africa’s national parks are too small for a pack of wild dogs, so the packs expand to the unprotected areas, which tend to be ranch or farm land. Ranchers and farmers protect their domestic animals by killing the wild dogs. Like other carnivores, the African Wild Dog is sometimes affected by outbreaks of viral diseases such as rabies, distemper, and parvovirus. Although these diseases are not more pathogenic or virulent for wild dogs, the small size of most wild dog populations makes them vulnerable to local extinction due to diseases or other problems.

“African Hunting Dog …….” was featured in Indigenous to East & Southern Africa Group.

“African Hunting Dog …….” was featured in phoDOGraphy

Tags

dog, hunter, pack, wild, africa, wolf, african, mammal, prey, hunt, carnivorous, zebras, pups, savanna, wildebeests, african wild dog

Comments

  • jdmphotography
    jdmphotographyabout 5 years ago

    :

  • “African Hunting Dog …….” was featured in phoDOGraphy

    – jdmphotography

  • Robert Elliott
    Robert Elliottabout 5 years ago

    wonderful capture!!!!

  • Thank you for your kind comment Rob ! ………

    – jdmphotography

  • David Clarke
    David Clarkeabout 5 years ago

    Excellent image, John, and fascinating info, thanks for sharing all of that:)

  • As good as done David thank you for the kind words and invite ! …..

    – jdmphotography

  • laureenr
    laureenrabout 5 years ago

    Excellent capture Jon, beautifully done.

  • Thank you laureenr for your kind comments ! …… (-;

    – jdmphotography

  • Virginia N. Fred
    Virginia N. Fredabout 5 years ago

    Love the closeup he is so intent on whatever he is looking at, nice work…gina

  • Gina thank you for your kind words looking at me I think lol ……. (-;

    – jdmphotography

  • Ginny York
    Ginny Yorkabout 5 years ago

    OMG Jon! I love these guys! Fantastic close up!!! A fav for sure!

  • Thank you Ginny for your kind comments and fav ! …… (-;

    – jdmphotography

  • gabbielizzie
    gabbielizzieabout 5 years ago

    WOW! this is an awesome looking fellow, fantastic capture. i love the information as well…

  • A wow’ comment is the best thanks gabbie I’m pleased you liked the info too ! ……. (-;

    – jdmphotography

  • Rick  Friedle
    Rick Friedleabout 5 years ago

    Great shot!

  • Hi Rick thank you kindly my friend ! ……

    – jdmphotography

  • Rainy
    Rainyabout 5 years ago

    Beautiful capture!

  • Well thank you Rainy ! ……. (-;

    – jdmphotography

  • jdmphotography
    jdmphotographyabout 5 years ago

    :

  • “African Hunting Dog …….” was featured in Indigenous to East & Southern Africa Group.

    – jdmphotography

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