Wild dogs or painted wolves (Lycaon pictus) Savuti channel, Linyanti region.
BOTSWANA. Southern Africa.
STATUS: ENDANGERED. THEY ARE THE MOST ENDANGERED LARGE CARNIVORE IN AFRICA AND THE SECOND MOST ENDANGERED CANID IN THE WORLD. This is due to habitat distruction, over-hunting and rabies.
HABITAT: Wide tolerance. Prefer to hunt in open plains but then take refuge in wooded areas, often in mopane forests. They are crepuscular (early morning and dusk) and diurnal but will hunt at night during a full moon.
They weigh 25-30 kg's with a shoulder height of 65cm.
Wild dogs are the most successful hunters in the bush and they hunt co-operatively in packs and maintain a speed of 60km p/h for about 5km. Once caught the victim in quickly torn apart and devoured to prevent hyaenas and lions from stealing the carcass. Wild dogs take care of their young and sick and will readily share their food with other pack members. The whole pack helps to raise the young which are born of the dominant pair. (alpha male and female)
They contact rabies from domestic dogs as they often cross through agricultural and rural areas.