The World's Rarest And Most Ancient Dog Has Been Re-Discovered in The Wild

The New guinea highland wild dog has been found extinct from its natural habitat for many decades until now. 

Researchers have come across a healthy, successful population, in one of the most inhospitable areas on our planet. DNA analysis found that these dogs date back to ancient times, and a recent exploration in New guinea’s central mountain chain found at least 15 pups, male and female, living far from society and in seclusion, and took 100 pictures of the findings.

"The discovery and confirmation of the highland wild dog for the first time in over half a century is not only exciting, but an incredible opportunity for science," says the group behind the discovery, the New Guinea Highland Wild Dog Foundation (NGHWDF).

"The 2016 Expedition was able to locate, observe, gather documentation and biological samples, and confirm through DNA testing that at least some specimens still exist and thrive in the highlands of New Guinea.”

If you had no knowledge of these beautiful dogs, well, New Guinea highland wild dogs weren’t known until 2 unconfirmed pictures taken recently in 2005, and in 2012. There had been no documentation pertaining to the amount of the native population for over half an entire century. Experts during this time had a fear that the ancient dogs had gone extinct.

They could just be really skilled at hiding and how so? 

Last year, an expedition done by NGHWDF occurred in the Papua province of western New Guinea, that’s bordered alongside Papua New Guinea to the East and the West Papua province is in the West. The expedition was led by zoologist James K. McIntyre, and ended up coming across a group of local researchers from the University of Papua, who was also searching for the dogs.

A muddy paw print was found in September 2016 that delivered what the group was searching for, signs that recently prove the dogs were still alive and in the forests in the highlands of New Guinea (which is 11,351 to 14,435 feet or 3,460 to 4,400 meters above sea level)

Throughout the area, trail cameras were placed to track sites where bait was placed to track dog movements. The cameras took in more than 140 images of the wild Highland Wild Dog in 2 days on Puncak Jaya, the highest summit on Mt. Carstensz, and is the tallest island peak in the entire world.

The researchers were able to watch and take observation notes in the area and retrieve DNA samples from small feces samples. These samples had discovered that New Guinea singing dogs and Australian Dingo are captive-bred variants to the New Guinea highland wild dog. 

An insufficient amount of evidence on the species made it hard for researchers to detect the relation of the three. It’s something that we will eventually discover in the near future. The New Guinea highland wild dog is our greatest chance to look deep into the evolution of canids. 

As explained by the NGHWD: 

The fossil record indicates the species established itself on the island at least 6,000 years ago, believed to have arrived with human migrants. However, new evidence suggests they may have migrated independently of humans.  
While the taxonomy and phylogenetic relationships with related breeds and Australian dingoes is currently controversial and under review for both New Guinea singing dogs and highland wild dogs, the scientific and historical importance of the highland wild dog remains critical to understanding canid evolution, canid and human co-evolution and migrations, and human ecology and settlement derived from the study of canids and canid evolution.

When it comes to dog breeds, you will never find a beautiful dog like this unique one. They tend to have a golden coat, and sometimes tan and black and a cream-colored coat of fur. They are high-tailed in a fish hook shape similar to a Shiba Inu. This dog species has triangular shaped ears that stand out on top of their head. 

It hasn’t been truly confirmed, but the highland wild dogs have the same vocals as their captive-bred twin, the New Guinea singing dogs. NGHWDF says there are around 300 New Guinea singing dogs left that are living in private facilities, homes, and zoos. They’re known for their high-pitched howls they sing to each other in groups:

There is research being conducted to further our understanding of these unique species of canines. A scientific paper pertaining to the discovery will be published in the coming months ahead.

There is a ton of optimism amongst researchers on the chances of the highland wild dogs’ surviving. Mining companies within the area have been designated the task of securing the environment and the area around the wild dogs’ habitat. This means they "inadvertently created a sanctuary in which the HWD could thrive” according to the NGHWDF.

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The World's Rarest And Most Ancient Dog Has Been Re-Discovered in The Wild The World's Rarest And Most Ancient Dog Has Been Re-Discovered in The Wild Reviewed by Jamm Real on 13:50:00 Rating: 5
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