Extinct Animal : African Wild Dog
Although similar in appearance to hyenas, African wild dogs are nevertheless true wild canidae. They are a mixture of black, yellow, and white in such a wide variety of patterns that no two individuals look exactly alike. African wild dogs are widely distributed across the African plains but they do not live in jungle areas.
They are social animals, living in packs of usually from 2 to 45 individuals. A hierarchy exists within the pack, but the animals are so friendly to one another that the pecking order is hard to determine. The young and the infirm are given special privileges within the pack.
African wild dogs use their sense of sight, not smell, to find their prey. They pay no attention to wind direction and they do not use cover when approaching their prey. They can run up to 55 km/h for several kilometres. In eastern Africa, they mostly hunt Thomsonís gazelles, but they will also attack calves, warthogs, zebras, impalas, and the young of large antelopes such as the gnu.
Growing human populations have decreased or degraded the African wild dogís habitat and also diminished their available prey. Road kill and human persecution have also had a negative impact on African wild dog populations. This species is also susceptible to a variety of diseases such as distemper, which is controlled in domestic dogs. Conservation of the African wild dogís natural habitat must have the highest priority, as these dogs suffer in habitats modified by human intrusion.