A Review on: Distribution, Ecology and Status of Golden Jackal (canis aureus) in Africa

Yigrem Kebede


The golden jackal (Canis aureus) is the most widely distributed of the three jackal species (C. adustrus, C. mesomelas, and C. aureus). The golden jackal occurs in North and East Africa, South-eastern Europe, Middle East and South Asia up to Burma and Thailand. This implies that the golden jackal is a habitat generalist and occurs in a variety of habitats from savannah and woodland in protected areas, non-protected cultural forests and the associated pastoral areas, farmland with dense human populations. Golden jackals are opportunistic feeders, being both predators and scavengers. In East Africa, although they feed on invertebrates and a fruit, over 60% of their diet is composed of rodents, lizards, snakes, birds, hares and young of Thomson’s gazelle. In Africa, golden jackals have been observed to kill the cubs of black-backed jackals. Jackals will feed alongside spotted hyenas, though they will be chased if they approach too closely. Population estimates for Africa are not available. Their number is shrinking due to anthropogenic causes. According to the IUCN (2004) list of threatened species, the status of golden jackal is “least concern”. There are no other known threats, except local policies of extirpation and poisoning and can be considered as a species requiring no immediate protection with caution and knowledge that populations throughout its range are likely to decline. Keywords: Anthropogenic causes, Golden jackal, Habitat, Population status, Predators

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3186 ISSN (Online)2225-0921

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