After years of Dingos cross-breeding with domestic dogs, a new study by the University of New South Wales (UNSW) has discovered that skulls from hybrids are no different what so ever to that of a pure-bred Dingo – Australia’s largest predator.
“We know that cross breeding has an effect on the dingo gene pool but what we didn’t know until now is whether cross breeding changes the dingo skull,” said William Parr, study lead author and post-doctoral research fellow at UNSW Medicine’s Surgical and Orthopaedic Research Laboratory, in a news release.
“This study has shown us that the dingo skull shape, which in part determines feeding ability, is more dominant than dog skull shapes.”
Until 2004, the dingo was categorised as of “least concern” on the “IUCN Red List” Red List of Threatened Species. However, it has since been recategorised as vulnerable species following the decline in numbers to around 30% of “pure” dingoes, due to Cross-breeding with domestic dogs. The dingo is regarded as a regulated, but not threatened, native species under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 in the “Commonwealth of Nations”.
However, this law also allows that dingoes can be controlled in areas where they have a proven impact on the environment. The law forbids the export of dingoes or their body parts from Australia, except for cases where it is regulated by the law.
[Pic Copyright: UNSW Media Office]