name = Jackal

image_width = 250px
image_caption = A black-backed jackal in Masaai Mara
regnum = Animalia
phylum = Chordata
classis = Mammalia
ordo = Carnivora
familia = Canidae
genus = "Canis"
genus_authority = in part
subdivision_ranks = Species
subdivision = """"""

range_map_width = 250px

A jackal (from Turkish "çakal", via Persian "shaghal" ultimately from Sanskrit "sṛgālaḥ" [ [http://www.bartleby.com/61/23/J0002300.html American Heritage Dictionary - Jackal entry] ] [ [http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=jackal Online Etymology Dictionary - Jackal entry] ] ) is a member of any of three (sometimes four) small to medium-sized species of the family Canidae, found in Africa, Asia and southeastern Europe. [Ivory, A. 1999. "Canis aureus" (On-line), Animal Diversity Web. Accessed January 18, 2007 at http://animaldiversity.ummz.umich.edu/site/accounts/information/Canis_aureus.html.] Jackals fill a similar ecological niche to the coyote in North America, that of predators of small to medium-sized animals, scavengers, and omnivores. Their long legs and curved canine teeth are adapted for hunting small mammals, birds and reptiles. Big feet and fused leg bones give them a long-distance runner's physique, capable of maintaining speeds of 16km/h (10mph) (just over 6 min/mile) for extended periods of time. They are nocturnal, most active at dawn and dusk.

In jackal society the social unit is that of a monogamous pair which defends its territory from other pairs. These territories are defended by vigorously chasing intruding rivals and marking landmarks around the territory with urine and feces. The territory may be large enough to hold some young adults who stay with their parents until they establish their own territory. Jackals may occasionally assemble in small packs, for example to scavenge a carcass, but normally hunt alone or as a pair.

Use in slang

All species of jackal are capable predators (all three hunt rodents and small mammals regularly, with the golden and black-backed species known to hunt poisonous snakes, large ground birds such as bustards, and mammals as large as young antelope). However, their popular image as scavengers has resulted in a negative public image.

* The expression "jackalling" is sometimes used to describe the work done by a subordinate in order to save the time of a superior. (For example, a junior lawyer may peruse large quantities of material on behalf of a barrister.) This came from the tradition that the jackal will sometimes lead a lion to its prey. In other languages, the same word is sometimes used to describe the behavior of persons who try to scavenge scraps from the misfortunes of others; for example, by looting a village from which its inhabitants have fled because of a disaster.
* In Nonviolent Communication, "jackal language" refers to communication that labels, judges, and criticizes.


*The New Encyclopedia of Mammals "edited by" David Macdonald, Oxford University Press, 2001; ISBN 0-19-850823-9
*Cry of the Kalahari, by Mark and Delia Owens, Mariner Books, 1992.
*The Velvet Claw: A Natural History of the Carnivores, by David MacDonald, BBC Books, 1992.
*Foxes, Wolves, and Wild Dogs of the World, by David Alderton, Facts on File, 2004.

ee also

*Bardi - shapechanging spirit in Trebizond folklore (feminine jackal)
*Anubis - Egyptian god with the head of a jackal

External links

* [http://www.awf.org/wildlives/144 Jackal: Wildlife summary from the African Wildlife Foundation]


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • JACKAL — (Heb. שׁוּעָל, Shu al; AV, JPS fox ). The jackal, Canis aureus, is the most prevalent beast of prey in Ereẓ Israel. Being omnivorous, it is encountered most commonly near inhabited areas, where it feeds on fruit, vegetables, offal, and carrion,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Jackal — Разработчик Konami Издатель Konami Жанр Экшн Платформы Аркадный автомат, NES, Famicom Disk System, Amstrad CPC, Commodore 64, ZX Spec …   Википедия

  • jackal — [jak′əl, jak′ôl΄] n. pl. jackals or jackal [Turk chaqāl < Pers shagāl < Sans śrgālá] 1. any of several wild dogs of Asia and N Africa, mostly yellowish gray and smaller than the wolf: they often hunt prey in packs, generally at night, and… …   English World dictionary

  • Jackal — Jack al , n. [Pers. shagh[=a]l: cf. OF. jackal, F. chacal; cf. Skr. [,c][.r]g[=a]la.] [1913 Webster] 1. (Zo[ o]l.) Any one of several species of carnivorous animals inhabiting Africa and Asia, related to the dog and wolf. They are cowardly,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Jackal — Jackal, Beutel der Hottentotten (s.d.) …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • jackal — (n.) c.1600, from Turk. çakal, from Pers. shaghal, from or cognate with Skt. srgala s, lit. the howler. Figurative sense of skulking henchman is from the old belief that jackals stirred up game for lions …   Etymology dictionary

  • jackal — ► NOUN ▪ a slender, long legged wild dog that often hunts or scavenges in packs, found in Africa and southern Asia. ORIGIN Turkish çakal …   English terms dictionary

  • jackal — /jak euhl, awl/, n. 1. any of several nocturnal wild dogs of the genus Canis, esp. C. aureus, of Asia and Africa, that scavenge or hunt in packs. 2. a person who performs dishonest or base deeds as the follower or accomplice of another. 3. a… …   Universalium

  • jackal — paprastasis šakalas statusas T sritis zoologija | vardynas taksono rangas rūšis atitikmenys: lot. Canis aureus angl. Asiatic jackal; common jackal; golden jackal; jackal; northern jackal; oriental jackal vok. gemeiner Schakal; Goldschakal;… …   Žinduolių pavadinimų žodynas

  • Jackal — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Jackal est un mot anglais qui signifie chacal. Il peut aussi désigner : Jackal est le nom du 11 eme fantome dans le remake du film 13 fantomes Jackal …   Wikipédia en Français

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