Meet The African Wild Dogs: Used to be common but now the new endangered species

  • By Great Migration Safaris
  • November, 2019
Wild Dogs In africa

With long legs and uneven fur, African Wild Dogs now become one more species to be enlisted as an endangered animal. Formerly used to be spotted many countries in the African continent, are now being disappearing rapidly. Tanzania is, however, carrying a decent number of wild dogs that are also well known as painted dogs or painted wolves.

While you are planning for a Tanzania Safari, be sure you are going to meet some of the iconic animals. Such animals are endangered or critically endangered. African Wild dog is a new name in the endangered list that you can spot in various places in Tanzania. Let’s learn a few more about these disappearing species.  


What Make Wild Dogs Unique Than Other Animals?

african wild dogs in a playful mood



Wild Dogs don’t only look different but also they have many unique characteristics. Few of them are;

  • African Wild Dogs are very social animals & leaves in a pack
  • These carnivorous species are very devoted to their packs. The pack is usually led by an alpha mating pair.
  • They are now one of the most endangered species in the world.
  • There are only 6,600 African Wild Dogs alive
  • They are scientifically known as Lycaon Pictus
  • An adult African wild dog reaches up to 92cm and 22kg in weight
  • They can run up to 44mph
  • They can live in diverse habitats including; deserts, forests, grasslands, and in savannah lands
  • These social dogs are very well known due to their behavior, they tend to help other pack members who are ill or weak
  • They have 80% success rate while hunting due to their exceptional level of communication skill
  • They live up to 11 to 12 years in the wild
  • With large rounded ears, these carnivores have excellent skills of hearing
  • While hunting wild dogs bring meat in their mouth for the pups in their pack in

Can You See African Wild Dogs In The Serengeti?

Serengeti National Park is the prime park of Northern circuit in fact whole Tanzania. Sometimes people take Serengeti as the synonym of Tanzania Safari due to a few unbeatable reasons. The national park offers an untamed game view including almost all species of animals of Africa continent.

3 African wild Dogs

Including the most spotted to the endangered species Serengeti national park hosts them all. Covering 14,750 km², the Serengeti ecosystem used to have the most numbers of Wild dogs. However, in 1992 the wild dogs got vanished from Serengeti.

It’s been believed that they left the land because of irritation. The irritation developed due to the researches that were going on them. The researchers used to put radio collars on them. These radio collars degraded their immunity and hence they left the land that used to be a great place for them to live.

In the year of 2000, the wild dogs again got spotted in the land of Serengeti. As per 20014 there only 24 dogs were available in the park. these 24 dogs established themselves in 4 different packs. However, it became a problem to the locals as the wild dogs used to hunt the domestics. So they started to kill wild dogs by poisoning them.

Then to save the genres of wild dogs, Tanzanian Wildlife Research Institute started the ‘Serengeti Painted Wolves Project’.   The conserved and moved them from Maasai land to Serengeti where they live depending upon only the wildlife.

 Now you can spot some wild dogs around Serengeti, however, it can be hard to spot them.

What are the other places to see them in Tanzania?

There are few places where the African Wild Dogs can be spotted like Selous Game Reserve and Ruaha National Park.

Selous Game Reserve; The game reserve is home to approximately 1,300 African wild dogs. This is the largest wild dog population of the whole continent. Also, it is the one-third population of the whole world. However, spotting them still is not easy in the grassland and miombo woodland of the park. The best time to spot them is when they are hunting or settling down to growing their babies.

Ruaha National Park: The largest and remote national park of Tanzania is another best place for spotting wild dogs. You can meet some of these species during your Tanzania Safari in Ruaha too. The national park is the 2nd largest protected area for wildlife. The national park is one of the remote parks and due to its large land area wild dogs get a fair chance to grow. The national park hosts 10% of the wild dog’s population of the world.   

Why Are African Wild Dogs Endangered?

Endangered african wild dogs



African Wild dogs getting vanished due to various reasons. Prime reasons are;

  • Breaking their habitats or acquiring them
  • Conflict with human
  • Infectious diseases

Poaching worldwide has been a danger to many animal species and in Africa, it’s one of the prime reasons for vanishing wildlife. Due to poaching and illegal meat trade wild dogs are also losing their numbers.

As wild dogs are carnivores they tend to eat the domestics of tribal community people residing in the area connected to national parks. Hence, the tribal used to kill them in order to save their domestic animals.

Apart from these the infectious diseases are also responsible to kill these iconic hunters.

What Is Being Done To Save The African Wild Dog?

Not as famous as other mammals of Africa, the wild dogs are one of the endangered species. Once there were half million of wild dogs residing in the African bushes and forest, now there are few thousands left now. The govt. of Tanzania with other wildlife welfare organization working hard to help them grow;

African Wild Dogs

  • As the African wild dogs cover-up over 500 square miles, it is needed to protect their territories. Hence, the govt. and other welfare departments are working on guarding their territories.
  • They are getting monitored always.
  • These monitoring is helping to predict their future movements and to plan according to how to protect them
  • The monitoring is also helping the poaching forbidden
  • The tracking collars are being very beneficial as they allow following that if any of them has moved out of their territory so getting them back to their area makes them safe

The endangered species that are residing in the national parks of the country are the prime reason for the travelers planning their Tanzania Safari once in a life.  Not only African Wild dogs but the list of endangered species includes a lot of animals like black and white rhinos. Not only the wildlife but also birdlife includes some of rarest feathers too.

Plan a Tanzania safari to meet these lovely lives before they get vanished. Book your trip with us; our expert guides will take you to the exact place in the right time where you can meet the African Wild Dogs. Not only wild dogs but a Tanzania Safari trip with Great Migration safaris will take you to explore this wonderland of Africa at its best.


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