The Golden Jackal (Canis aureus aureus) is a canid wolf-like mammal in the Canidae family. It is also called the Persian Jackal. It is related to the Coyote (Canis latrans) and the Grey Wolf (Canis lupus).
The Golden Jackal can vary in colour from pale-yellow to dark-beige. Its underbelly is pale brown to pale grey. It has large pointed ears and a pointed snout (nose). It has pale legs.
It can grow to about 48 centimetres (19 inches) tall, which is the size of a medium-sized dog.
It is native to south-east Europe, south-west Asia, and regions of south-east Asia.
It prefers to live by rivers and water sources in foothills and low mountains.
The Golden Jackal is omnivorous, eating anything that is available, such as lizards, small rodents, and hares. It usually forages alone or in pairs. It is a scavenger.
The Golden Jackal usually mates for life with one partner. The female has 1-6 young, called pups, after a pregnancy of 60 days. Pups are initially suckled and later fed with regurgitated food until they are able to forage with their parents after about 90 days. Both parents look after and feed their pups.
[Location of photographs: Dushanbe Zoo, Tajikistan]
Photographer: Martina Nicolls
Martina Nicolls: SIMILAR BUT DIFFERENT IN THE ANIMAL KINGDOM