UPDATED 3.7.2018: The sighting of another Golden Jackal in the Netherlands appeared to be a stunt from an advertisement agency. Unfortunately, the clip of the video was used to trick experts into false verification. The animal was indeed a Golden Jackal, but was not filmed in the Netherlands. Through professional video editing, it seemed like the Golden Jackal crossed a forest in the Netherlands. The content of the posting is updated accordingly.
Nevertheless, it occurred in the previous years that golden jackals visited the Netherlands. Several camera traps captured individuals on different locations. However, sightings of a golden jackal are often confused with its smaller brother, the fox. Due to their flexible diet, golden jackal easily adapt to new circumstances while continuing to expand their distribution.
Please also read: First golden jackal depredation confirmed in the Netherlands
Returning throughout Europe
The return of the golden jackal to the Netherlands is not surprising. The observation follows the trend of the expansion throughout Europe. Earlier, camera traps captured the first golden jackals in France, that crossed the border from Switzerland. The golden jackals were spotted again several weeks later, still within the French Alps. Other golden jackals made it to Denmark, Estonia, Germany and further. We can expect that the golden jackal will continue to expand its range, as it is so flexible.
Naturally controlled expansion
Several natural factors regulate the expansion of the golden jackal. It generally prefers to avoid places with longer snow cover. With the rising temperatures of our climate, the golden jackal is able to expand further and further. Another natural controller is the bigger brother, the wolf. According to the latest scientific estimations, there are currently 105 000 golden jackals throughout Europe. This is about 5 times more than the latest wolf population numbers in Europe. Studies show that territories of golden jackal and wolves normally do not overlap. A wolf considers the golden jackal as a competitor, and will try to chase or kill the golden jackal.
Stay up to date on the Wilderness news, subscribe to our Newsletter!