Dingo

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Dingo

A wild canine endemic to many parts of Australia, the dingo generally inhabits grasslands and forests and is thought to have descended from semi-domesticated dogs. Despite the diversity of wildlife across Australia, dingoes are the continent’s largest terrestrial predator.


Content List

1. Scientific & Common Names

2. Characteristics

a. Breeding

b. Behavior

3. History

4. Present Status


Scientific & Common Names

Kingdom - Animalia

Phylum - Chordata

Class - Mammalia

Order - Carnivora

Family - Canidae

Genus – Canis

Species – C. lupus (dingo)

Common Names – Dingo


Characteristics

Although they’re not generally aggressive, dingoes are probably best studied with our figurine, rather than up close in real life. While they look like domestic dogs, they are wild canines and need to be treated with respect, like any wild creature.


Breeding

Dingoes breed once a year, and typically only the alpha male in a pack will breed, while the other males help raise the pups. There are usually around five pups per litter. While many farmers in Australia consider them pests, livestock makes up only a small part of their diet, and they are known to eat more than 150 different species of animal, from bugs to fish, and even kangaroos!


Behavior

Dingoes are apex predators, and hunt in packs much like a wolf or coyote.


History

Interestingly, there’s no consensus regarding what the dingo actually is. It has been referred to as a wolf, dog, dingo, wild dog, and even a feral dog. In fact, researchers and scientists aren’t exactly sure where dingoes even came from. The most popular belief is that they’re the descendants of semi-domesticated dogs, but others suggest that they descended from a now extinct species of Asian wolf. Dingoes have even been known to mate with other domesticated dogs, making their classification even more challenging!


Present status

Dingoes have recently been categorized as "Vulnerable", mainly due to cross-breeding with domestic dogs. Thus, the "purity" of wild dingoes is being diluted.