The Golden jackal (Canis aureus) is a medium-sized species of canid which inhabits north and north-eastern Africa, south-eastern and central Europe (up to Austria and Hungary), Asia minor, the Middle East and south east Asia. It is a highly adaptable species, being able to exploit different foodstuffs and live in numerous different habitats, including the African savannahs, the mountains of the Caucasus and the forests of India.

Golden jackals are opportunistic feeders, being both predators and scavengers, and will readily eat refuse and vegetation during certain seasons. Although capable of killing animals 3 times their size, they usually only target sick or newborn animals.

Jackals rarely form small packs when hunting, though packs of 8-12 jackals consisting of more than one family have been observed in the summer periods of the Trans-Caucuses. When hunting singly, golden jackals will trot around an area occasionally stopping to sniff and listen. Once prey is located, lone jackals will conceal themselves, quickly approach then pounce. When hunting in pairs or packs, jackals run parallel and overtake their prey in unison. When hunting aquatic rodents or birds, they will run along both sides of narrow rivers or streams, driving their prey from one jackal to another.