Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) is pleased with the news that a newly formed pack of four African Wild Dogs was released from their temporary holding boma onto the Mabula Private Game Reserve in the southern part of the Waterberg in Limpopo in May. TSAM is supporting the conservation of the endangered African wild dog population inhabiting the Waterberg, Limpopo and had provided a Toyota Hilux DC 4×4 and operational funding to the Waterberg Wild Dog Initiative (WWDI) for the next year.
The two males and two females will form the second-known breeding pack of African Wild Dogs in the Waterberg. The males naturally dispersed from their resident pack in northern Limpopo in early 2021 in search of females. They travelled 330km before arriving in Mabula in July 2021. Sadly, there were no females to be found, so two females from the free-roaming Waterberg Wild Dog population were chosen for translocation to Mabula to join these lonely males. The females were moved to Mabula’s boma to be bonded with the males just before they were due to disperse from their natal pack in March 2022.
The four dogs spent several weeks in adjacent holding bomas to encourage them to bond and allow time for the new pack to adjust to each other and the area before their release onto the reserve. The bonding was extremely successful, and the dogs are now roaming the reserve as a cohesive pack.
With fewer than 650 African Wild Dogs remaining in South Africa, the formation of this new breeding pack contributes to the long-term conservation of the species. It also boosts the Mabula Game Reserve’s ecotourism potential, as Mabula is now the closest reserve to Gauteng with free-roaming African Wild Dogs.
The formation of this pack was a collaboration between the Mabula Private Game Reserve, the Waterberg Wild Dog Initiative, the Endangered Wildlife Trust, and Rooiberg Veterinary Services.