Do jack­als climb trees?

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I took this photo on my brother-in-law’s farm in the Kala­hari. We have to drive through a sec­tion of his farm to get to ours. I was sur­prised at the sight­ing – that’s not where jack­als usu­ally go look­ing for food! ELMA STORM, Oli­fantshoek

Wildlife ex­pert LD VAN ESSEN says: What a beau­ti­ful photo of four things that are char­ac­ter­is­tic of the Kala­hari: red sand, a camel thorn tree, a so­cia­ble weaver nest and a jackal! If a Jack Rus­sell can climb a wall or a fence to ex­plore the neigh­bour­hood, a camel thorn tree shouldn’t pose much of a chal­lenge to a jackal, es­pe­cially if there’s food in­volved. Jack­als are op­por­tunists and prey on a va­ri­ety of food sources, in­clud­ing birds and eggs. There might also have been a rep­tile hid­ing in the so­cia­ble weaver nest. I doubt a jackal would be able to climb a straight trunk, but this tree leans to the side and looks like it would be easy enough to scale. I’ve seen quite a few pho­tos of jack­als climb­ing trees in the Kgala­gadi Tran­fron­tier Park.

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