It’s a family of six, mother father and their four young cubs. After several days of howling of jackals that rises multi fold after dark we finally found out that the two adults (male and female) from a pack of estimated 12 jackals are resident and raising a family at the lodge.
The babies are small, (estimated 2 month old) and stay put inside the burrow nest near the machan. The burrow is rather well planned with a two way opening, one of which faces towards the elephant grass plantation and other towards the less used pathway leading to Barahi’s suite room. Since mother jackal tends to change the nesting site every few weeks, to protect the young ones from possible threats we have completely refrained from possible disturbance in her area.
When babies grow up, the mother shifts from weaning to feeding regurgitated food to the cubs. The cubs are in good health and have now grown up enough to sprawl in the proximity of the nest. The mother has not changed her home yet, and the father visits mostly between 7-9 PM. We have got camera trap pictures of the family, to share.
With monsoons coming and the grass getting denser and greener, the jackals can now be seen goofing around with each other in various areas of the lodge. They use their specific path each time which runs parallel between the welcome hut and reception of the property. They have grown up well and seem to have adjusted to human presence. Many of us also believe that it is indeed a good choice made by the jackals to nest in the mini forest of the lodge. It does protect them from possible threats to life. They have also well adjusted with the presence of humans around, as neither jackals nor us trouble each others. The lodge also has a healthy population of Indian hare, a preferred prey for the gang of jackals.
This co existence has helped us to know them better. These shy animals which were once seen only after nine have become little more fearless and have entered the stage of curiosity. Now when they would see us or the guest looking at them with our binoculars or cameras they would stop and glare at us, posing with a handsome grin.
Courtesy : Vineeta Yadav