Barking up the wrong tree...wild dogs in Serengeti?

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Nov 30th, 2005, 07:06 PM
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Barking up the wrong tree...wild dogs in Serengeti?

As I am researching my upcoming safari and reading about the Serengeti, I have come across various mentions that there are wild dogs in the Serengeti. I consider this a big tease and nothing more.

Have any of you Serengeti veterans ever seen a wild dog while there? Is there even a glimmer of hope of such a spotting? I will be at four different camps in the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and the Serengeti (Olduvai, Masek, Piaya and Mbuzi Mawe).

I am excited about all the lions, various antelope species that I have never seen in the wild and vast open landscapes, but those damn wild dogs are just a thorn in my side and I wish that I had never read that they exist in the Serengeti. I have never seen a Fodorite trip report from East Africa that has included wild dogs, but, then again, in all honesty, I have been so consumed with Southern Africa, that I have only read East Africa posts slightly more than I have read posts about Egypt or the Middle East (which is never).

Wild Dogs in the Serengeti? Fact or Fiction?
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Nov 30th, 2005, 07:19 PM
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Can't recall exactly, but I thought I'd seen posts about wild dogs in Kenya and also southern circuit TZ (Selous perhaps?).

I don't remember ever reading a trip report from Serengeti that included wild dogs. Of course, I'd be thrilled to be corrected on this one!
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Nov 30th, 2005, 07:30 PM
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FYI: there's an article in the current Arusha Times (arushatimes.co.tz) that indicates they are no longer to be found in the Serengeti. But again, I would love to hear evidence to the contrary.
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Nov 30th, 2005, 08:33 PM
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I read there are 1300 wild dogs in the selous. "nyamera" saw them in samburu. the honolulu zoo website says they have them there too
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Nov 30th, 2005, 08:53 PM
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Roccco,

I didn' see or hear of wilddogs in the Serengeti, but saw a pack on the border of the Rufiji River in Selous.
 
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Dec 1st, 2005, 05:30 AM
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Rare, if at all.

But at one time they were common in Kenya and Tanzania. I read something by Karen Blixen where she described a pack of hundreds running by her home, which is just outside Nairobi.

On my trip to Botswana in 2001, I stayed at four camps, and I saw them at each camp at least once (and at Chitabe we saw them on each drive). You need to plan a trip to Botswana ;-)
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Dec 1st, 2005, 06:45 AM
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Rocco will have to break down soon!
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Dec 1st, 2005, 06:52 AM
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To answer the question-if anyone ever has seen wild dog in the Serengeti. Yes, in '87. A pack of about 30+ right next to the road in prehunt mode. But not again in the last few trips. Don't get your hopes up.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 07:01 AM
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I am planning on visiting Botswana in July or August of next year. Here is what my first "familiarization" trip looks like for now:

Luangwa River Lodge, South Luangwa (3)
Kutandala, North Luangwa (2)
Mwaleshi, North Luangwa (2)
Tafika, South Luangwa (2)
Songwe Village (Kwando), Vic Falls (2)
Kwando Lagoon (2)
Kwando Lebala (2)
Kwando Kwara (3)

Assuming I will be flying in and out of Joburg, I will probably have a night at the Westcliff or Michelangelo at the beginning and end.

Now that I am in the business, I intend to bump up my travel to about 7 - 8 weeks per year, with two major trips. The above itinerary along with my Feb/March Tanzania trip, and perhaps a nice 2 week cruise to South America in late Nov/early December aboard a nicer cruise line would be perfect.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 07:11 AM
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Rocco, what do you mean by a "familiarization" trip? Is that an IRS term?
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Dec 1st, 2005, 08:33 AM
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Hey, that's great! I'm sure expenses related to familiarization trips are tax deductible, and what a way to go! As much as I'd like to do the same, I'm afraid my little retirement check won't quite cover the upfront expenses required to make a go of it. I'm jealous but wish you the best with your new venture.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 11:01 AM
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Well, up until 20 years ago wild dogs did exist in the Serengeti / Mara. This article published in this weeks Arusha Times suggests that it was researchers interference that led to their extinction in the area.

http://www.arushatimes.co.tz/features_4.htm.

For now, my best bet to see Wild Dogs may be a short flight to Honolulu:

http://www.honoluluzoo.org/african_hunting_dog.htm

I could be there by sunset and then have this monkey off my back!
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Dec 1st, 2005, 12:18 PM
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In 1980 Dogs ranged over most of sub saharan africa.

You can also go to Cincinnati and Seattle I believe. Why anyone would choose Honolulu over Cincinnati is beyond me.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 12:21 PM
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To save on airfare and put those savings towards Africa.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 12:27 PM
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It's also really easy to fly to Costa Rica from SoCal--there you can easily get a replacement monkey on your back should you decide you miss the first one.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 02:52 PM
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I believe the dogs in the Serengeti disappeared in the early 1990's. Most likely cause is disease, distemper and rabies, from domestic dogs that run free and often carry the diseases. With the wild dogs being so social diseases spread very quickly and can wipe out local populations fast.

As for zoo's we have them here in Denver and get puppies just about every year. However, Roccco as I think you have figured out Botswana is your real ticket to see the dogs in action. Once you do your trip you are going to wonder why you waited so long for Botswana.

BTW, I know you have lots of pics for your website but if you need a wild dog just shoot me an email and I can hook you up.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 03:25 PM
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Pred

I get to Denver a couple of times a year we'll have to hook up.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 04:23 PM
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napamatt,

And here I have scheduled two nights in Amsterdam on the way back from Tanzania when I should have extended my four hour stopover in Cincinnati (en route to Los Angeles) to those two days!

I will get my wild dogs yet and when I do they better run or else I am grabbing the dominant male and female, taking them home and then breeding them to repopulate Africa or at least the San Gabriel Mountains in Los Angeles!
Plenty of deer, hares, and unsuspecting hikers and cyclists to feed them.
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Dec 1st, 2005, 06:37 PM
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What were you thinking?
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Dec 1st, 2005, 09:33 PM
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Matt,

It would be great to meet you when you come to Denver sometime. Just drop me an email [email protected] and we can make a plan.

-- Bill
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