The Golden Jackals are opportunistic feeders, meaning that they will eat anything available, ranging from grapes and carobs to rodents and birds or even animal carcasses. The aim of this research project is to investigate the preference of seasonal and easy to find food, like carob or olives, with not so common, man-made food, like bread, and with nutrient dense food, like meat, but which is hard to reach, for example hanging on string. During the last month, the terrestrial team conducted jackal diet preference surveys, during which jackal presence was recorded on cameras during the second survey, however, more data is needed to be able to do the statistical analysis of their diet preference. In the future months, the team is planning to continue placing camera traps and collect more data.
Jackal acoustic survey
Acoustic survey results will inform us about jackal population changes on Samos island and allow us to compare results not only with previous surveys in Samos but with similar studies held around Europe as well.
Current surveys cover 1/3 of Samos island. Surveys happen on windless and dry nights with a visible moon. The aim of survey is to assess the presence of jackal territorial groups within range of the broadcast sites. Surveys are done by listening and recording jackal response after playing recorded jackal howl for 30 seconds. The jackal howl needs to be played 5 times with 5 minutes pause to detect response. Thus far, the surveys have been conducted in three different locations. During the next weeks, the team is planning to examine the remaining previously selected areas.