Wild Dogs in Kruger National Park

033I have been on several safaris in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and South Africa since 1997. Most recently, since 2007, I have been spending two months every two years doing self-drive safaris into Kruger National Park. During all that time I have only had the privilege of seeing Wild Dog twice. Both sitings were in 2011 in Kruger National Park. The first siting (of 3 dogs) was about 7 km south of Lower Sabie Rest Camp on the tar road and the second was a few weeks later we saw a single wild dog near Skukuza. There are about 200 wild dogs in Kruger so seeing them is a big treat. There are several known packs in Kruger.086 I am hoping that I will be luck again in 2015 finding and viewing the Crocodile Bridge pack between Crocodile Bridge Gate and Lower Sabie Camp or the pack that hunt around Pretoriuskop. Both of these packs by all accounts are rather large with fourteen or more members. These dogs packs are usually dominated by a monogamous breeding pair. Females can have between 2 and 20 pups which are cared for by the entire pack. Wild dogs, their latin names means “painted wolf”, are extremely social and are known to share food and assist weaker members of the pack. Social interaction between members of the group is common including touching and vocalizations. Wild dogs hunt as a pack to tackle much larger animals like impala but will also supplement their diet with small rodents and sometimes birds. African wild dogs are endangered.090

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