Hey! There’s a wolf hiding in jackal’s clothing!
Meanwhile, the true golden jackal in Asia keeps on keepin’ on.
This isn’t a series, by the way; it just fits in with Friday’s post on Golden Cats and the idea of convergent evolution, though in this case interspecies hanky-panky (jargon alert) might also have been involved.
African Golden Wolf
In eastern Africa, this certainly looks and sounds like a jackal:
Yet top wildlife experts (check the names on the study mentioned in this article, if you follow such things) call it a wolf.
Like many species over the last 19 million years or so, African golden wolves have discovered the land bridge with Europe.
In this next video, I can believe that National Geographic still calls it a jackal — so does the Canid Specialist Group, although they explain, in their description linked above, that it is a wolf.
What’s difficult to grasp is the fact that this was filmed in Europe (possibly the Danube delta) and was posted in 2020! Shouldn’t it be happening in the Pleistocene, or at least medieval times?
Definite wolf vibes here. Of note, they’re also competing with lynx.
Eurasian golden jackal
Just going on appearance alone, these could be clones of those African golden wolves — but genetics shows a different descent.
Chillin’ cautiously on a winter morning. The video poster notes that this is a Himalayan subspecies of Eurasian golden jackals.
African golden wolves must fend off giant eagles, but Asian jackals live in tough neighborhoods, too!
The setting in this next video is Sri Lanka:
In the US, we don’t have jackals; as we’ll see next week, we have coyotes.
Are they simply jackals under another name?
Featured image: Martin Prochazkacz/Shutterstock