Thursday, September 21, 2006

Wild Dogs

Wild Dogs on the Prowl.

Sighting and studying these animals were the reason for my last trip into the jungle. I was in luck. I saw these dogs at three of the four sanctuaries i visited, Wayanad , Bandipur and Nagarhole. I missed them at Mudumalai. At each of the three i saw and recorded different aspects of the dogs nature. The first was at Muthanga range in Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary. We were on the jeep trying to spot something other than the spotted deer and the occassional peacock. we suddenly saw a short reddish brown ball bounding across the jeep path about 400-450 mts in front of us. We were elated. We realised that they were wild dogs. We took a chance and charged our jeep to the spot. As we reached the spot, we saw that the pack ( there were 6 of them ) , had split and 2 of the dogs were on either side of our jeep. Two others had rushed into the meadow near to the left of our jeep. The two on the right side of our jeep were half hidden in the shrubs and were very agitated by our presence. Their movements confirmed to us , that they wanted to join the rest of the pack. We took our vechile a little further away from them and these two bounded across and joined the pack. Climbing on top of the jeep , i was able to make out something looking like a stag scurrying through the meadow. I think the dogs were in pursuit of the stag. Good Hunting friends !!

The pictures of the dogs in this post are from Nagarhole National Park. My shots of the dogs from Muthanga are not that good. At Nagarhole I lucked out. After that beautiful sighting of the bisons i saw the dogs. My first sighting of the dogs here , is the above picture. No images or words can potray what my eyes saw. I have heard stories of how the wolf/dogs and others of the dog family behave. I was witness to another of nature's wonders. The dogs were on a single line formation , and were scenting the ground as they ran. They were out for their breakfast i guess. The dogs had split themselves into pairs lead by a lead runner, who my guess should be the alpa male of the group. The pairs maintained
an equii -distance from the others and were looking to their sides as they ran, trying to spot a prey. They communicated with each other in what almost sounded like a whistle - whine. I am
unable to place the sound. The picture on to your left is of the leader of the pack. Look at the way the body flows with his stride. Symmetry in motion. We ran along with the dogs on the other side of the road for about 2-3 minutes , though we learnt later on that it was dangerous to say the least.

Scientific Info : Wild Dogs or Dholes.
Color: Reddish Brown
Weight : 12 - 18 kgs
Hunting Mechanism : The dogs are found in packs of 7-12 nos and attack their prey on legs , crippling their prey. As the prey falls exhausted and crippled to the ground the dogs start tearing its flesh and eating even before the prey dies. Within a few hours the kill is cleaned to the bones.

1 Comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Karthik

Nice photos. May I know when these photos were taken (time of the day and perhaps date?

I also read your profile.. interested to know more about the initiatives you talked about in the profile.

Thanks and best regards
Vijay Khambete