article / 14 November 2022

Jackal in hide: detection dogs show first success in the quest for golden jackal (Canis aureus) scats

Published paper attached


Golden jackal (Canis aureus) monitoring in central Europe generates more interest and becomes increasingly important with the species’ appearance in areas where it was previously unestablished. For genetic monitoring of golden jackals via scat collection, the distinction of jackal scats from those of related species such as the red fox (Vulpes vulpes) is crucial: if done incorrectly, it can falsify diet studies or inflate costs of DNA analyses. In this study, we tested the potential benefits of using domestic dogs to specifically find jackal scats. We used trained scat detection dogs to locate and identify golden jackal scats in an area of dense shrubland, with the species’ presence previously confirmed via bioacoustic monitoring.

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