European Journal of Wildlife Research

, Volume 60, Issue 5, pp 771–780 | Cite as

Effect of interactions among ethnic communities, livestock and wild dogs (Cuon alpinus) in Arunachal Pradesh, India

  • Salvador Lyngdoh
  • Govindan Veeraswami GopiEmail author
  • K. Muthamizh Selvan
  • Bilal Habib
Original Paper


A questionnaire survey in 48 villages covering over 10,000 km2 in Arunachal Pradesh, India, was conducted to quantify the livestock depredation and resultant killing of dholes in retaliation. Depredation was reported to be caused highest by dhole (Cuon alpinus) in comparison to tiger (Panthera tigris) and leopard (Panthera pardus). Respondents claimed major losses (7.90 %) of socio-culturally valued livestock, i.e., mithun (Bos frontalis), to depredation. Scat analysis revealed livestock constituted only 10 % of the diet of dhole, tiger and leopard. Mithun depredation by dhole was correlated with hunting (r = 0.54, P < 0.01) and retaliatory killing (r = 0.54, P < 0.01). DFA showed retaliatory killing of dhole occurred in areas where depredation was otherwise also reported by other large carnivore. Majority of the respondents welcomed decline in dhole encounters (70.77 %). Prejudices against dhole that correspond to their direct killing in retaliation may lead to unrecoverable losses in its population. This study highlights the significance of the region in securing the long-term survival of large carnivores, especially dholes, in this region.


Dhole Retaliatory killing Livestock depredation Mithun Eastern Himalaya Bos frontalis Scat analysis Large carnivores 



We thank Dr. V.B. Mathur, Director of the Wildlife Institute of India (WII) and Dr. P.K. Mathur, Dean of the Faculty of Wildlife Sciences of WII, for providing us with the encouragement and logistic support at the Institute. We sincerely thank the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India and the Rufford Small Grant Foundation for providing the necessary fund support. We sincerely thank Drs. A.J.T. Johnsingh, S.K. Dutta, Bhaskar Acharya and Claudio Sillero-Zubiri for their support. Most of all, we earnestly acknowledge the Department of Environment and Forest, Government of Arunachal Pradesh, particularly Mr. J.L. Singh, C. Loma, P. Ringu, and Tana Tapi. We are grateful to our field assistants, Rubu Tagio, Joli Weli and Gangaram Chiri, for their immense support in data collection.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Salvador Lyngdoh
    • 1
  • Govindan Veeraswami Gopi
    • 2
    Email author
  • K. Muthamizh Selvan
    • 3
  • Bilal Habib
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Animal Ecology and Conservation Biology Wildlife Institute of IndiaDehradunIndia
  2. 2.Department of Endangered Species ManagementWildlife Institute of IndiaDehradunIndia
  3. 3.Wildlife Institute of IndiaDehradunIndia
  4. 4.Department of Animal Ecology and Conservation BiologyWildlife Institute of IndiaDehradunIndia

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