Animals / Mammal Facts / Dogs - The Canidae Family, Good Runners

Dogs - The Canidae Family, Good Runners


lycaon pictus

African wild dog - Lycaon pictus

 

The canidae family includes all your favorite dog-like carnivores - jackals, coyotes, wolves, and foxes. We should be familiar with them because “man’s best friend” was the first animal to be domesticated thousands and thousands of years ago, so we’ve had a special relationship for some time now.

 

 

Otocyon megalotis

Bat eared fox - Otocyon megalotis

 

The family of canids is not very big with 36 species but they are well distributed everywhere around the world except for some islands, New Zealand, New Guinea and Madagascar. The dingo was introduced into Australia by the aborigines. The dogs generally have muscular, long-legged bodies, often with a bushy tail. Their ears are usually large, upright and triangular, and they have long muzzles with a good sense of smell. Strong jaws and canine teeth help with their duties as predators.

 

vulpes cana

Blanford's fox - Vulpes cana

 

The key skill of dogs is their ability to run well: fast, over long distances and with good endurance. Many species hunt in packs utilizing their running and numbers to trap and exhaust large prey. But there are also species that hunt all alone like the fox. They play an important role in the ecosystem regulating the populations of their prey (rodents, rabbits, etc).

 

speothos-venaticus

Bush dog - Speothos venaticus

 

vulpes zerda

Fennec fox - Vulpes zerda

 

Urocyon cinereoargenteus

Gray fox - Urocyon cinereoargenteus

 

jackal

Jackal - Canis mesomelas

 

maned wolf chrysocyon brachyurus

Maned wolf - Chrysocyon brachyurus

 

 

 

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