Territorial male black-backed jackal on small stock farm

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Monday, 18th April 2022

Ranging behaviour of a territorial male Black-Backed Jackal in a small stock farming area in the Southern Free State

Green, A., Avenant, N.L. Melville, H.I.A.S


Damage causing predators are globally the most common source of human wildlife conflict and involve a broad spectrum of
taxa. Black-backed jackals are considered damage-causing mesopredators and are perceived to have a considerable effect on
live-stock production in South Africa. However, information regarding the ecology of black-backed jackals on South African
farmlands is limited. This study provides additional insight into jackal activity and space use patterns on small stock farmlands.
A single jackal was collared as part of a larger study investigating the spatial and temporal interactions between caracals
and jackals on a small stock farming area in the southern Free State, South Africa. The home range was estimated as 45.47
km2 (95% OUF AKDEc) with a core area of 1.59 km2 (50% OUF AKDEc). Activity varied throughout the night with peaks
occurring at 01:00, 05:00, and 18:00. The average velocity was estimated at 0.6 ± 1.0 km per hour with a maximum of 5.0 km
per hour. The mean distance travelled per day was 9.71 ± 2.45 km. The jackal displayed residency behaviour which represents
an insight into the movements and activity of a territorial male jackal in a farmland environment. Habitat selection analysis
suggests that the Besemkaree Koppies Shrubland was used for denning while the open Xhariep Karroid Grassland was the
jackal’s main foraging ground.

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