|African Wild Dog
ByCharles J Sharp (Photograph used on Wikipedia)
The spat on African Wild Dogs began with a paper in Nature in 1998 by Gorbman, Mills, Raab and Speakman2. They used isotope turnover methodology to determine energy demands in the wild from energy expenditure. Using those data, they then showed that an increase in kleptoparasitism to 25% of kills would require more than 12 hours of hunting per day—an unsustainable burden that could make the dogs susceptible to local extinction in areas where kleptoparasites are abundant. That calculation has been quoted widely (but not in the IUCN account of this species) in considering the survival of this, classified as Endangered, species. There is known to be an inverse relation between wild dog and hyena numbers.