“The dogs left for Cambodia yesterday fully trained on your scats; thank you once again!” Barney Long, Senior Program Officer – WWF Asian Species Conservation wrote to Big Cat Rescue today.
Marie and I were excited to hear the scat detection dogs are on their way to Cambodia – a 30+ hour trip for them and their handlers from Conservation Canines. Even better is that we now have pictures of Sadie and Scooby, the dogs chosen for this project. Both are black labs and are “insane” when it comes to playing fetch. They say they are the perfect dogs for doing the census work in Cambodia to determine current populations of big cats there. All those bags and bags of leopard scat we picked up and sent to them has taught them well!!
Scooby has quite a resume.
He’s worked in Alberta surveying for wolf, caribou and moose
and in Montana determining the presence of grizzly and black bears.
Now, he’s off to Cambodia to survey for tiger, dhole (wild dog), clouded leopard and leopard!
Sadie, another dog with boundless energy, surveyed the White Mountains
to determine the presence of Mexican Grey Wolves on local Native American Reservations
after the wolves’ re-introduction in that area. She also helped in Alberta investigating
the effects of oil drilling on local populations of wolf, moose, and caribou.
As far as big cats go, Sadie is proficient at tracking Jaguar and Mountain Lion,
but will hopefully now add many more to her list in Cambodia!
If you go to “Conservation Canines” on FaceBook, you’ll be able to see some amazing pictures of these dogs in action around the world. Please become a FaceBook FAN of "Conservation Canines" so you can stay up-to-date on their progress. WWF’s Barney Long promised to forward pictures to Big Cat Rescue as Sadie and Scooby do their scat detection work in Cambodia.
We can’t wait!
Julie Hanan, Volunteer Senior Keeper
For more information, go to:
Photos courtesy of Center for Conservation Biology