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   Location:Home > Public Education > Popular Science
Asian wild dog appears in Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden
Author: Ai Chongrui
Update time: 2021-07-26
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A dhole (or Asian wild dog, Cuon alpinus) was captured by infrared camera in the eastern part of Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden (XTBG) in July, which proves the occurrence of the largest and most widespread species of wild canid in Southeast Asia in the garden.  

The Asian wild dog was captured appearing in the area where the herd of 17 elephants staying about a month in the garden. The infrared cameras were equipped to monitor the elephant herd and unexpectedly the dhole was discovered in the garden. 

Currently, dhole is listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List and under the first-class state protection in China. Their population is on a constant decline as they are threatened by depletion of prey base, habitat loss, and hunting. 

“The occurrence of the dhole here somewhat proves the success of a conservation-oriented botanical garden in China,” said a research of XTBG. 

The dholes occur in a variety of lowland and montane habitats including primary forest, secondary forest, forest-edge and scrub-grassland mosaic. Unlike the wolf, the dhole pack does not have a rigid dominance hierarchy but is more egalitarian and flexible. 

Their fur is a rich, orange-brown color throughout much of the body, but the belly and inner part of the limbs may be whitish. The long, bushy tail is mainly black. Their legs are long and slender. The snout is relatively pointed, and their ears are large and rounded often with white fur inside. 

In Chinese culture, the canine dhole is used to represent mean and truculent people. When talking about it, people may think of words like vicious and cunning. 


A dhole (or Asian wild dog, Cuon alpinus) captured by infrared in eastern part of XTBG. 


A dhole (or Asian wild dog, Cuon alpinus) captured by infrared in eastern part of XTBG. 

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Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences. Menglun, Mengla, Yunnan 666303, China
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