- Land Rover’s on-going support of Wild Dog conservation recognised by the Endangered Wildlife Trust
- The Cheetah Award is the EWT’s most prestigious accolade
- Land Rover has supported the EWT for over a decade
- Land Rover Defender remains a symbol of Wild Dog conservation
10 December 2012, PRETORIA – Jaguar Land Rover South Africa has been bestowed the Endangered Wildlife Trust’s (EWT) most prestigious accolade – the Cheetah Award. The honour – made only under exceptional circumstances to organisations – acknowledged Land Rover’s support of the Wild Dog plight for over a decade.
Land Rover has supported the EWT Venetia-Limpopo Wild Dog Project, the KZN Wild Dog Project and the Kruger Park Wild Dog Photographic Census through the provision of funds and vehicles for field work. The Wild Dog programmes form part of the EWT’s Carnivore Conservation Programme.
“Having hardy, reliable and safe vehicles in the field takes a lot of strain off the field workers and frees up funds for other field expenses,” said the EWT’s citation of the Land Rover award. “The support that Jaguar Land Rover South Africa offers to the EWT’s Carnivore Conservation Programme is invaluable and they are passionate donors who, over and above supplying the vehicles, do a lot to increase the profile of African Wild Dogs throughout the region.”
The Land Rover Defender has become a symbol of Wild Dog conservation in South Africa. The vehicles work hard in a number of different conditions across South Africa from chasing escaped Wild Dogs through Zululand, to doing tourist surveys in Kruger and transporting Wild Dogs between reserves.
Cheetah Awards are usually reserved for individuals who have gone beyond the call of duty and extended themselves in support of the EWT, be it in fundraising, business, strategic partnerships and overall development of the core functions of the EWT and its programmes.
“Of course we’re delighted to be acknowledge for our support of a cause so close to our hearts,” said Kevin Flynn, Managing Director of Jaguar Land Rover South Africa and Sub Sahara Africa. “But it remains more important to us that Jaguar Land Rover’s assistance sustains the conservation efforts of one of the most endangered and misunderstood animals in Africa, realising the EWT’s efforts in growing Wild Dog populations. Land Rover is immensely proud to be the Defender of the Wild Dog.”
Wild Dogs are South Africa’s most threatened carnivore with less than 450 of the so-called ‘painted dogs’ remaining in South Africa.
African Wild Dogs once occurred throughout sub-Saharan Africa but now occupy only a fraction of the area they used to. Human conflict and persecution, infectious diseases (often transmitted from domestic animals) and the fragmentation of their natural habitat are the main factors contributing to the decline in the Wild Dog population.
Land Rover supports the survival of an animal that shares many of the brand’s characteristics: it travels long distances over all sorts of terrain; it has a gutsy adventurous spirit and a love of freedom and the great outdoors.
“We would like to acknowledge Jaguar Land Rover South Africa for keeping us moving – they are a crucial link in our conservation chain,” said the EWT.
- The Wild Dog is South Africa’s most endangered large carnivore.
- The entire Wild Dog population is less than the number of Rhino’s that were killed in 2011.
- Wild Dogs are considered to be extinct in 23 countries in Africa.
Did you know?
- Wild Dogs are considered to be extremely efficient hunters with their targeted prey rarely escaping.
- Wild Dogs can run for long distances at speeds up to 55km/h.
- If a pack’s numbers drop below six their organised, co-operative hunting tactics become ineffective.
- Wild Dogs have long tails with bushy white tips; they serve as flags to keep the pack in contact with one another.
- Wild Dogs are also known as Painted Dogs. Each dog’s markings are unique, much like a fingerprint. Conservationists use these markings to identify different dogs.
- A Wild Dog uses up twice as much energy as a working Border Collie