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The Australian Dingo or Warrigal is a free-roaming wild dog unique to the continent of Australia, mainly found in the outback. Its original ancestors are thought to have arrived with humans from southeast Asia thousands of

Dingo
Dingo

Origin

Australia

Habitat

Varies

Diet

Mostly kangaroos, some times cattle and water buffalo calves

Combat status

Will fight the Golden Jackal and the Gray Wolf

years ago, when dogs were still relatively undomesticated and closer to their wild Asian gray wolf parent species, Canis lupus. Since then, living largely apart from people and other dogs, together with the demands of Australian ecology, has caused them to develop features and instincts that distinguish them from all other canines. Dingoes have maintained ancient characteristics that unite them, along with other primitive dogs, into a taxon named after them, Canis lupus dingo, and has separated them from the domestic dog, Canis lupus familiaris.

Dingoes play an important role in Australia's ecosystems; they are apex predators and the continent's largest terrestrial predator.

Because of their attacks on livestock, dingoes and other wild dogs are seen as pests by the sheep industry and the resultant control methods normally run counter to dingo conservation efforts. Today, it is estimated that the majority of the modern "dingoes" are also descended from other domestic dogs. The number of these so-called dingo hybrids has increased significantly over the last decades, and the dingo is therefore now classified as vulnerable.


DescriptionEdit

Domestic and Pariah dogs in southern Asia share so many characteristics with Australian Dingoes that experts now consider them to be, if not "Dingoes" in the Australian sense of the word (which implies an independent, wild animal, integrated into the ecosystem), members of the taxon Canis lupus dingo, a particular subspecies of Canis lupus. While the relationship with humans varies widely among these animals, they are all quite similar in terms of physical features.[12]



Dingoes have a relatively broad head, a pointed muzzle, and erect ears. Eye colour varies from yellow over orange to brown.[14] Compared to other similarly sized familiaris dogs, dingoes have longer muzzles, larger carnassials, longer canine teeth, and a flatter skull with larger nuchal lines.[8]

The average Australian Dingo is 52 to 60 cm (20 to 24 in) tall at the shoulders and measures 117 to 154 cm (46 to 61 in) from nose to tail tip. The average weight is 13 to 20 kg (29 to 44 lb), however there are a few records of outsized dingos weighing up to 27 to 35 kg (60 to 77 lb).[15][16] Males are typically larger and heavier than females of the same age. Dingoes from the North and the North-West of Australia are larger than Central and South-Australian populations. Australian dingoes are invariably heavier than Asian ones.[3] The legs are about half the length of the body and the head put together. The hind feet make up a third of the hind legs and have no dewclaws.[3] Dingoes can have sabre-form tails (typically carried erect with a curve towards the back) or tails which are carried directly on the back.[14]

[edit] FurEdit

The fur of adult dingoes is short, bushy on the tail, and varies in thickness and length depending on the climate. The fur colour is mostly sandy to reddish brown, but can include tan patterns and be occasionally black, light brown, or white. Completely black dingoes probably were prevalent in Australia in the past, but have been sighted only rarely in recent times and are now more common in Asia than in Australia.[8]

Most dingoes are at least bicoloured, with small white markings on the chest, muzzle, tag, legs, and paws being the most common feature. In the case of reddish individuals, there can be small, distinctive, and dark stripes on the shoulders. All other colour and colour-patterns on adult dingoes are regarded as evidence for interbreeding with other domestic dogs

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