The haunting call of the Black-backed Jackal can often be heard at nightfall in the African bush and is one of the typical night sounds of the wilderness. Not being very active creatures by day, you will rarely spot them around the reserve, but we were lucky. One of our guests, who was bird-watching, caught sight of this Jackal moving around in search of food.
Black-backed Jackals are hunters with a strong sense of smell and will roam around scavenging the remains of kills made by other larger predators. Once food is located, they will alert the rest of the pack. Being protective by nature, a mother jackal will change den sites every two weeks to protect her pups from predators. They are very cautious so their dens have multiple exits, in case of an emergency. This is also what makes them elusive and rare to spot.
Often perceived to be scavengers, Jackals are very capable hunters and can live up to 12 years because of their cunning and adaptability. Forming one of the keystone species, they play a vital role in our Eco system.
Can you spot a Black-backed Jackal on your next game drive? Keep your binoculars in hand, you never know!