Wild Dogs of the Okavango Delta

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Wild dogs are also known as cape hunting dogs and painted dogs. Even though they are not large, their speed, stamina, and teamwork make them highly efficient predators. It took me 7 trips to Africa to see them for the first time, in 2015 in Tanzania.  In Botswana we saw them many times in our 4 days at Camp Moremi in the Moremi Game Reserve. Too bad they are highly endangered, so get to Africa soon if you want to see them before the burgeoning human population displaces them, and they become impossible to find in the wild.

One of the packs had a dog that was radio collared. We only saw the collars on a few dogs. I never found out why they were collared, so now I have an excuse to go back!

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We came across several packs in the 4 nights we were in the Moremi Game Reserve. Some packs had half a dozen members, while others had up to 30 members. It was not uncommon to see them relaxing next to our vehicle.

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After a good yawn and roll they would become active. Sometimes it would be in the morning, other times it would be in the later afternoon.

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At the end of the day they congregated around water for a drink, and to see what prey might be present. They obliged me by posing for some nice reflection shots.

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One day we spotted them while they were actively hunting. Over 30 of them came trotting down a trail, occasionally moving towards the tall grass, then back on to the trail. They move fast, and our guides did a good job of keeping up with them as they darted all over the place. After their darting they would sit on the trail, look at us, yawn, then shoot off into the bush again. After following them for 20 minutes they vanished into thin air. It was all quite exciting, especially the reaction from our guide who was driving like a mad man trying to keep up with their changing direction.

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The best part is seeing how keen their senses are, as they look, listen, and smell for their quarry

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