Nov 9, 2013

The Whistling Hunters

Field Studies of the Asiatic Wild Dog
by M.W. Fox

This short but very interesting book is about a wild canine that lives in jungles in India, the Indian wild dog, also called the Asiatic wild dog or dhole. I picture it as being something like an australian dingo, for it is mid-sized and reddish in color. It's the wild dog that formed the large packs featured in one of Rudyard Kipling's Mowgli stories. They are called whistling dogs because apparently they make a piercing whistling noise as a contact call. The author reports making a whistle to attract the dogs to his study area, after days of searching for the animals. The book is one of those written in a very reader-friendly fashion, describing the course of the study, what they learned about the dogs' behavior and pack structure, and plenty of interesting anecdotes. It's one I'd dearly like to add to my collection, not having been able to come across another copy since I read this years ago from a public library in San Francisco. Oh, and it has lots of black-and-white photographs, which makes it look dated but they're very good images regardless, for the time.

Rating: 3/5    150 pages, 1984

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