Definition of jackal in US English:

jackal

noun

  • A slender long-legged wild dog that feeds on carrion, game, and fruit and often hunts cooperatively, found in Africa and southern Asia.

    Genus Canis, family Canidae: four species, including the golden jackal (C. aureus) and the black-backed jackal (C. mesomelas)

    • ‘Raccoons, civets, jackals, badgers, skunks, and bears also eat fruit, honey, seeds, roots, and other plant foods.’
    • ‘Burrows which have been abandoned may be used for shelter by bats, ground squirrels, hares, cats, civets, hyenas, jackals, porcupines, monitor lizards, owls and warthogs.’
    • ‘These forests are home to other unusual and endangered species, including the Asiatic jackal and silvered langur, many of which have also disappeared from Laos.’
    • ‘There are 36 species of Canidae, including dogs, wolves, coyotes, jackals and foxes.’
    • ‘Following on their heels are the predators of the savanna - lion, cheetah, wild dog, jackal, hyena and vultures.’
    • ‘Canid rabies is commonly transmitted to cattle via the bite of carnivores such as jackals or dogs in Africa.’
    • ‘Meat was abundant, for those who could catch it or wrest it from the competition, i.e. leopards and lions, not to mention hyenas, jackals, and vultures.’
    • ‘Only five percent of mammals are thought to be socially monogamous, including gibbons, jackals, and tamarins.’
    • ‘Waldi warns us not to set up our beds outside the camp tonight as hyenas and jackals prowl this area.’
    • ‘The savanna landscape supports a small antelope species called Grimm's duiker, side striped jackals, and rare birds including Denham's bustard.’
    • ‘Among cooperative breeders of certain other species, such as wolves and jackals, pups born in the same litter can be sired by different fathers.’
    • ‘No other animal species have so far died, but nature officials were worried that predators such as lions, vultures, jackals and hyena may feed off the flesh of the dead animals.’

Origin

Early 17th century: from Turkish çakal, from Persian šagāl. The change in the first syllable was due to association with jack.

Pronunciation

jackal

/ˈdʒæk(ə)l//ˈjak(ə)l/