South Africa’s wild dogs population is increasing
The wild dog population in the Kruger National Park has seen an increase from 120 individuals in 2009 to between 300 and 350 today. Grant Beverly of the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT) said that smaller reserves across the country have also seen an increase in the number of wild dogs after The Wild Dog range expansion project and the Wild Dog Advisory Group (WAG) started introducing them into provincial protected areas.
Wild dogs are the most endangered carnivore in southern Africa and second (to the Ethiopian wolf) most endangered carnivore in all of Africa. These animals often fall prey to snares.
‘The wild dogs are quite susceptible to being caught in snares because they’re incredibly right wide-ranging, so they often move outside the boundaries of protected areas. They also use game paths to and that’s often where you know bushmeat poachers will set snares because they know that’s where the predator is going to come along,’ Beverly added.
Organisations like EWT and WAG play an important role in the conservation of wild dogs through collaring, tracking, anti-poaching units, and awareness and education.