2 days ago
Photo by NatGeo explorer/filmmaker @sandesh_kadur
The African wild dog - Lycaon pictus - one of those animals I’ve always wanted to watch... and did we get to watch them or what?! In two days we saw them attacking hyenas, eating imapalas, stalking, hunting, sleeping, playing! Simply amazing experience with these beautiful canids.
Classified as endangered in 2016, the wild dog has lost a lot of habitat and their numbers are down to about 6600.
More info from wiki:
The species was first described scientifically in 1820 by Coenraad Temminck, after having examined a specimen taken from the coast of Mozambique. He named the animal Hyaena picta, erroneously classifying it as a species of hyena. It was later recognised as a canid by Joshua Brookes in 1827, and renamed Lycaon tricolor. The root word of Lycaon is the Greek λυκαίος (lykaios), meaning "wolf-like". The specific epithet pictus (Latin for "painted"), which derived from the original picta, was later returned to it, in conformity with the International Rules on Taxonomic Nomenclature.
The English language has several names for Lycaon pictus, including painted lycaon, African wild dog, African hunting dog, Cape hunting dog, painted dog, ornate wolf and painted wolf. The latter name is being promoted by some conservationists as a way of rebranding the species, as "wild dog" has several negative connotations that could be detrimental to its image Nevertheless, the name "African wild dog" is still widely used.