Denning Wild Dog update

Posted on April 23, 2011

There have been a few interesting developments over the last few days…

The good news is that we have heard the pups in the alpha female’s den. It is a phenomenal experience just to sit and listen to them whimpering and squealing down in their birth chamber. The den site has been opened for viewing as from yesterday. It is still very sensitive so only one vehicle at a time is allowed. We also found the other subordinate female’s den not too far away but haven‘t heard the pups down there yet…

Sadly one of the five other adults has been killed by a lioness. One of the rangers saw the lioness emerge with blood on her face after chasing the five dogs into a thicket while they were hunting. We have only seen 4 of the dogs hunting the last few days and our worst fears were confirmed when the remains of the dog were found yesterday.

With their numbers being so low pack will battle to hunt and provide for so many pups. The Alpha male is still alive as we saw him yesterday so at least the social stability in the pack is still intact. We think it was a young female killed, so this leaves the Alpha male, the older short tail male and 2 young male helpers plus the 2 denning females in the pack.

See below image of the Alpha male (left), he has very distinctive white markings on his rump and a white bushy tail (males tend to have more white on their tails)

Alpha male (left)

Below is the Alpha female (on right) heavily pregnant about a few weeks ago and another young female on the left. Look at the different colouration of the much older Alpha female, more tan in her coat and faded.

Alpha female (right)

5 thoughts on “Denning Wild Dog update

  1. Dear Dave,

    I have visited LH four times but have never seen the dogs. look at my function at the end of the comment and you know why I am so interested. Anyway there is always an excuse to come back.

    What I like about you ( besides all the LH rangers) is the fact that you describe your dog stories in a semi scientific way in casu a little bit more in depth information.

    Please keep us posted because have dogs at your priority is a gift from heaven !

    Ron van der A
    Chairman Painted Dog Conservation Foundation, The Netherlands and http://www.painteddogconser

  2. Hi Ron,

    You are so right, "a gift from heaven" indeed!

    Painted dogs are my favourite animal to spend time with in Africa, would really enjoy to chat to you when you are next here about your work!

    I was extremely priveledged to visit the rehabilitation facility and interpretive hall near Hwange in Zimbabwe. What an education on these special animals, I have the Painted Dog sticker proudly on my vehicle!

  3. Dear Dave,

    Reading back my comment I saw some mistalkes : Have has to be having and of course priority has to be property

    Anyway, what a surprise that you have visit our project !

    To avoid we get borring to other readers

    can you give me your E mail address for futher chatting.

    If possible can you send me a picture of your vehicle with sticker ( one of the full car with the sticker, in that way people can zoom in and a close up)

    I will use your picture in our monthly Dog Call newsletter

    To the whole LH team: Great Eastern

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