Banyayi Appears: strong and healthy
On Sunday morning Jealous took it into the Hwange National searching for the dogs. Since the Mabuyemabehma incident we have been making extra efforts to locate and see each and every pack and see how they are doing. Banyayi pack is one of the packs that we don’t see more often but Jealous managed to see the nine strong pack (6 males and 3 females) at Kennedy 1, deep into the park. To our relief, the good news was that the pack is looking healthy, strong and, as usual, they had full stomachs.
All painted dogs are good hunters but Jealous says the Banyayi pack is exceptionally good in their league. He says whenever he sees them (or hear from sightings by other people) their stomachs are full or they are eating from a fresh kill. Impressive!! However, the alpha male of Banyayi pack, Will, is still with no soul-mate. The last alpha female of Banyayi pack was Khaya, who disappeared from the pack sometime in November last year, reducing the pack number from 10 to 9. Will is now left with his brother, Beetle, and children forming the pack but no mating partner.
Drawing from years of experience and observation of the painted dogs, Jealous fears the pack will disintegrate if no any other female joins them to fill the alpha female post between now and the next mating season in March. Even though there are adult females in the pack currently, they are all Will’s daughters and painted dogs don’t inbreed. We will continue to monitor how the pack holds up together as they approach the mating season and update you.