Black-backed jackal pair lives together for life.

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Habitat

The black-backed jackal is commonly found in the southern and eastern part of Africa. It’s believed is has been in existence for the last 2.5 million years after a study was done on fossils discovered in Kenya, Tanzania and South Africa. These incredible animals occupy a broad range of habitat from dry areas which are their favorite , moist areas and desert areas.

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Physical structure description.

Black-backed Jackal has long legs, large v shaped ears and sharp canines. It can weigh 6-13kg, male being larger than females and can measure a height of 38-48 cm. The base color court is reddish-brown with slavery hair that extends from shoulders to the base of tail. They have a black slide running along the flanks. The tail is bushy and tipped with black. The chest, throats, rib and inner surface of limb are white.

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Social and behaviour life.

Black-backed jackal are mainly nocturnal but they are often seen during daytime. They are monogamous and breeding pairs live together for life. You will always find them in pairs or parties consisting of the extended family unit. They are territorial with each pair having their own territories which they mark by the use of urine and faeces. The young pups stays in their parents territories until they find a mating pair. At the parents home they act as helpers. Sexuality begins at 11 months but non engages into sex until they find a partner. They have great communication strategies e.g repetitive yapping call when mobbing large carnivores like leopards. They can also communicate with body posturing and tail flagging.

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Gestation Period.

Gestation period takes place for 2 months. The pups are usually born during the month of August-October in an old termite mound. Feeding is mostly done by the parents and the older siblings. At the age of 3 months they get adult coat colorization. At 6 months they are able to hunt for themselves, though they get much food from the family members.

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Food.

Black-backed jackal are great scavengers feeding on preys killed by larger animals. As well they can kill small prey such as newborn gazelles, impalas, small livestock, insects, fruits and small poultry.

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Do you know of a small creature that stands up to big wild cats.

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Habitat.

Banded mongoose is commonly found in Eastern and Central parts of Africa. It lives in savannas, grasslands and mainly feeds on beetles, Millipede, Centipedes, Insects, Lizards, Snakes, Frogs and invertebrates. They also feed on fruits, roots and eggs. They shelter on various types of den but the most favorite dens are the termites mounds.

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Physical characteristics.

They have small ears, short muscular limbs, long tails and large head. The tail is almost long as the rest of the body measuring 15-30 cm. Animals on the rainy areas are larger and darker than animals in dryer areas. The breast area is smaller than the abdominal part of the body. The face is triangular shaped with flat broad ears. Their coat coloration is greyish-brown with an unmistakable series of light and dark vertical bands across the back. An adult animal can weigh 1.5-2.5 kg. They have 5 toes on the fore feet, the first toe is seen only when it’s moving slowly.

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Social and behavior life.

Banded mongoose live in mixed sex groups of 7-40 members who spend their night sleeping in underground dens. The pack always remains together but forage individually but they might team up to hunt a huge prey. They are known to be sympathetic as the take care of the old, ill, injured and the young ones by providing them with food, grooming them and informing them of dangers. They are nomadic. They never remain in one area for long, though the always visit their favorite den frequently.

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Gestation period.

Unlike other species of Mongoose, all females in a banded Mongoose group can breed. Gestation period takes place in between 60-70 days. All females give birth on the same day or within few days. The litter range from 2-6 pups and an average of 4. The young ones are taken care of by the helpers mainly the non-breeding males and breeding females. The babies are allowed to suckle from only lactating in the pack.

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After giving birth the females are guarded and mated by 1-3 dominant males. Dominant males monitor the females and aggressively defend them from non-breeding males. While the dominant males do most of the mating, females often try to escape and mate with other males in the group. Non breeding males mate secretively.

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Banded Mongoose have stood up to lions when confronted and threatened. They have also been observed attacking lions faces.

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Where to find the Banded Mongoose.

  • Kenya.
  • Namimbia.
  • South Africa.
  • Tanzania.
  • Mozambique

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Why African Wild Dog are struggling species.

The Africa Wild Dog.

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Home.

Africa Wild Dog also known as “painted Wolf” is mostly found in the open plains and sparse woodlands of sub-Saharan Africa.

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Physical characteristics.

They have irregular mottled coat with patches ranging from Black, White, Red and brown fur. These different colors help in visual identification has they can recognize each other at a distance of 50-100M. Every animal has it own unique coat pattern. It losses it’s fur has it ages with the older one looking almost naked. These carnivores have big ears and are long legged with only four toes per foot unlike other dogs. Their two middle toe pads are fussed together. They have a quite unique dentition different from other canis. They have narrower canines and large premolars which are just slightly smaller than those of hyena. They communicate through touch, actions and sneezing. Where the dominant pair sneeze first then others follow indicating time for hunting.

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Social and behavior life.

African wild dog have a strong bond and live in permanent pack consisting of 2-20 members including pups. However in larger packs you can find a larger group consisting of around a hundred adults due to the seasonal migrations. In parks like Masai Mara National Reserveand  Kruger National Parkyou will find a group of 4-8 members. Male and females have different dominance hierarchies with the oldest leading the group. The pack is dominated by a monogamous pair. Unlike other animals, the females leaves the pack while the male rarely leave from the natal pack. Every pack has a ratio of 3:1. Male being many than females.

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Gestation period.

The gestation period take place in between 69-73 days. The females give birth to minimum of 2 and maximum of 20 pups. The pups are cared for by the entire pack members. After giving birth the mothers stays close to the pups chasing away the enemies approaching the pups while the other members go hunting. Once  pups are 10 weeks they follow the adult during hunting. The young ones are so privileged  as they eat first after a kill.

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Diet.

They mostly hunt antelopes and can also attack bigger preys like wildebeests especially if it is ill or injured. They can also feed on birds, rodents and livestock.

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Threats.

African wild dog are facing more danger while in their wild space since are targeted by human being. They are mostly poisoned and short by farmers who blame them for leopard and hyenas short coming. They also face the danger of disease like rabies, habitats loss and competition with the larger predictors like lions.

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Where to find the African Wild Dogs.  

  • Kenya.
  • Tanzania.
  • Botswana.
  • Namibia.
  • Zimbabwe.
  • Mozambique.
  • South Africa.

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Did you know that each zebra has unique stripes just like human finger prints.

Zebra.

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Zebra are one of the most beautiful animals living in the wild. The white and black stripes gives them a spectacular look and it helps disperse heat in the Africa savanna. There are 2 types of zebras the Grevy and Common Zebras. You can differentiate them from their stripes pattern.

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They mainly inhabit the grasslands, Savanna woodlands, mountain and coastal hills. They can weigh 350kg and have a height of 1.2 -1.3m. Males are always slightly bigger than females.

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The stripes are vertical on the head and horizontal in the main body. The vertical stripes in the head helps the zebras to hide in the grass. The stripes also help to confuse the predators by visual illusions.

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Zebra makes wide range of noises some which are similar to those of horses. They can run at a speed of 65km/h faster than some predictors. Mostly you will find them in a group called dazzle of zebra. It mainly consists of female and young ones. Incase of an attack the members surrounds the enemy in order to scare it away.

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The most dangerous wild creature.

Leopard.

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panthera pardus also known as “chui” in swahili is the most dangerous wild creature. It often confused with the cheetah though their is a distinctive difference if they are keenly observed. African leopard is found in the sub Saharan Africa & north east Africa.

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Leopards can weigh 100-200 pounds and can run 36km/h making them faster than human being and tiger but a little slower than the mighty cheetahs. They can jump 10feet vertically and 20 feet horizontally.

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They are professional climber of trees and branches. When they kills their preys they carry it up the tree to keep it away from hyenas and other scavengers. They mostly feeds on Antelope, Impala, Gazelles and Monkeys.

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These creatures hunt during the night and spend the day resting. When hunting they camouflage on grass to avoid being seen by the prey and strikes when it get close to the prey.

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Female leopards give birth to 2-3 cubs and carry it’s babies for 90-105 days. The babies are born blind and often eaten by snake, hyena, jackals and birds. Leopards are solitary creatures and mostly meet when mating. Their territory’s are recognized by a unique urine scent left behind.

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Leopards are large with strong jaws and broader skull. Their fur is light colored with spotted marks and the color is determined by the environment they are living in. They have long tail that they wrap around everything and they can live up-to 20 years.

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Sea creature that lacks teeth and a stomach.

Sea horse.

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Sea horse is one of the sea creatures with a weird body structure. It has a head and neck that resembles a horse and a tail that looks like a snake.

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Sea horses are mainly found in shallow salt waters of tropical all over the world. They live in sea grass and there are five species remaining.
H erect
H Zoesterae
H Guttulatus( dwarf sea horse)
H Hippocampus (long snouted sea horse)
H Fuscus (Sea pony)

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They measure a size of 1.5-3.5 cm. They are poor swimmers and therefore swim with their tails entangled together, they can only move upright, downwards and backwards. Most of the time they prefer spending days resting while holding on the sea grass using their tails. They propel themselves using a small fin that flutter upto 50 times in a second.

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They neither have teeth nor stomach the food passes directly to the digestive system. These shows that they eat small fish often to keep themselves alive. It lacks predictors since it is too bony and can’t be digested easily.

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Sea horses are monogamous and mate for life. unlike the other animals male carry the babies. The females releases eggs on the males abdomen, which it carries until they hatch and then releases fully developed sea horses on water.

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They have a unique style of courtship which last for up-to 8 hours. During this period they engage in dances, swimming side by side, changing colors and spinning around.

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They have eyes that work independently while one is focusing behind the other one might be focusing in front surveying the surrounding.

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One of the most aggressive animal in the wild.

African Buffalo.

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African buffalo that is also referred to Cape Buffalo inhabits sub Saharan parts of Africa. Unlike the water buffalo that is domesticated African Buffalo has not been domesticated due to it aggressiveness.

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Buffalo can weigh 500-100kg with males being larger than the females. They have a height of 1.7-3.4m. Adult male have long horns that intersect at the base forming a continuous born shield. Male horns are thicker and longer than the females.

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Buffalo has brown or black hair, large head and strong legs. They are very wild and aggressive when attacked by enemies such as lions, leopards and hyenas. They have a defensive mechanism that they use when attacked by predictors. They first circle the young, old or sick then the others confront the enemies.

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Buffalos are grazers mainly feeding on the grass but Incase of scarcity they can feed on leaves or trees. They live in groups of around 12 members, the group consist mainly of the females, young one and one or more males. Males too form their herd group while others opt to live a solitary life.

They have a poor sense of hearing and eye sight but have a very strong sense of smell. Just like elephants buffalos have a great memory and can easily remember predictors who once attacked them.

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Female buffalo carry their babies for 11 months and only give birth to 1 baby. The baby can suckle from the mother for one year.

Buffalo lifespan in the wild is 20 years.

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Sub Saharan mighty beast.

African elephants.

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Elephants are the largest land mammals and are easily recognized because of their giant body structure. They are mostly found in National Reserves or zoos.

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These sub Saharan mighty beast can weigh upto 6000kg and have a height of 10 feets. They have 2 long curved tusks for digging, fighting and foraging. Each elephants has a favorite tusk. They also have a trunk that is used for smelling, caressing the babies, breathing and detecting vibrations. They have large ears that resemble the shape of Africa continent(African Elephant), these large ears keep them cool during the hot climate in sub Saharan. Elephants can communicate visually and flap their ears to show aggression.

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These beast are herbivores mainly feeding on grass, leaves, roots and fruits. Elephants have 6 set of teeth that grow throughout their life’s. They cat eat around 150kgs of food per day and can walk for up 195 km/day despite their huge size. They can run at a speed of 40km/h faster that human being. They are super intelligent and have a great memory.

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Males know when females are ready for mating through a chemical substance secreted in their urine and faeces. Elephants gestation last for 22 months making them give birth after every 5 years. The newborn when born weigh around a 100kgs and can’t see after birth but they recognize their mothers by touch, scent and sound. Babies can suckle from their mothers gallons even when at the age of 10 years.

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They live in a group headed by the oldest female who is assumed to have more experience and trusted on guardian the entire herd and ensuring survival even during the difficult times.

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The groups are made up of females, young ones and closely related relatives. The young males leave the group at the age of 10-19 years so as to form their own male groups. They blow loud trumpet that can be heard up-to 8km away.

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It is believed that they have the greatest friendship bonds. They live close to their mating partners and have a great relationship with their relatives and close friends. They mourn the death of their loved ones and pay tribute by even visiting the places where their friends died at.

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Wild elephants can live upto 70 years.

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Most bizarre flightless birds in the world.

Adelie Penguin.

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Adelie Penguin are the most bizarre flightless birds in the world. These little cuties also referred to aquatic birds, were discovered in the year 1840 by a French Antarctic explorer who named them after his wife. They are found along the Antarctic coastline and they are the smallest species of penguin.

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The Adelie have some distinguishing characteristics that are quits different from it fellow species. They have a white ring around the eyes, black head and back, red beak covered with feathers, and a tail that resembles a brush which is little longer than others. Males and females have similar physical features and therefore it quiet difficult to distinguish between the two.They weigh 3-6kgs and are about 70cm tall. Their weight varies with the seasons. During the period of shedding their old feathers ie between February and March they loses up-to half of their weight.

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Adelie walk weirdly while on upright position. They are good swimmers and great divers who dive up to 170 m deep sea hunting or fleeing predators. They can hold their breath for upto 3 minutes. They mainly feed on krills, fish and can feed up-to 2kgs in a day.

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Adelie have an interesting mating habit. Most of them are homosexual, others mate with their dead females, while some physically and sexually abuse the young chicks. High percentage of the females are unfaithful to their partners and most part ways after spending 5-6 years together.

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During mating the males attract the females by building magnificent nests. They build these nest out of small stones. At times they tend to be naughty and end up stealing the neighbors nest stones which ends up to hostility between the two.

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Animal whose musk is used as a perfume ingredient.


African Civet.

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African civet is the largest of the small medium sized mammals and has a close relation to mongooses. It mainly occupies the sub-saharan part of Africa, areas rich of food, water and shelter. It secrete a musk that ways up-to 4 kgs. The musk produced is used as an ingredient of perfumes.

African civet weigh 8-20kg and have a height of 67-84cm. They have a black ring around the eyes and thick grey/black fur with irregular patches on the body. They have a short mane, a long neck, a long tail covered with dense fur. They have 40 strong teeth that are used to catch preys.

African civet just like the lions they spend their day resting and are active during the nights. They are omnivores and mainly feed on fruits, vegetables, small insects and other mammals. They make homes from the abandoned burrows.

Females give birth to 4-6 babies and their pregnancy lasts for 2 months. They are able to have 2-3 litter in a year. Each litter can have 3-4 babies. Their babies are able to claw at birth. The babies feed on their mothers milk for 42 days and later the mother provides for meals until they are 2 months old. At the age of 2 months they are capable of going searching for food by themselves. By the time they are 8-12 months they become sexually active.

They are solitary and meet only when mating. The males secretes a musk that has a strong smell which last for months and it meant to attract females for breeding. Their enemies are lions, hyenas and leopards. They can live up-to 12 years in wild and 20 years in captivity.

Diets omnivores.

Home Sub-Saharan

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