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View Full Version : Geography expert needed: How long would this journey take? (picture included)



Kinzel
07-24-2016, 12:05 AM
I have mapped out destinations for an African wild dog character of mine to travel. I am aware it will take a long time, but a specific measurement of time would be great. African wild dogs can run up to 35 mph and are equipped to travel long distances in a given day. How long would it take to get from one point to another? (in the map I have dotted the points, and the starting point has an arrow pointed at it for clarification)
And how many miles would that be?
http://oi68.tinypic.com/2rdw4t3.jpg

http://tinypic.com/view.php?pic=2rdw4t3&s=9#.V5PNwVdlz_1

MaeZe
07-24-2016, 12:15 AM
Your image doesn't show. I think you were supposed to choose a link from the left hand drop down menu.

Why don't you just do the math, allow for a slower pace than the maximum sprint of 35mph and maybe some stops for rest and water.

Kinzel
07-24-2016, 12:55 AM
Your image doesn't show. I think you were supposed to choose a link from the left hand drop down menu.

Why don't you just do the math, allow for a slower pace than the maximum sprint of 35mph and maybe some stops for rest and water.
Thanks for telling me! Fixed it. And I would but math is a rough subject for me and I get utterly confused at the simple thought of trying to figure it out on my own. I also do not know the mile distance between the locations, so that's why I'm looking for a geography expert.

Cath
07-24-2016, 01:28 AM
Google maps can help you with a rough guess at distance.

Catherine_Beyer
07-24-2016, 05:49 AM
You don't need math to figure out how far the distance is. You just need a map with a scale.

Can't really answer your question without knowing more about the dog. What is "long distances"? How fast do they normally travel? Knowing the top speed really isn't helpful, as animals can only travel at top speed for short periods of time. That's why no one sprints through a marathon.

Catherine_Beyer
07-24-2016, 05:53 AM
Also, that map seems to be labeled 8000-7000 years ago (I don't understand the "14C"). If you're taking terrain into consideration, you need a current map. at least parts of Africa have changed a lot in that time.

frimble3
07-24-2016, 08:08 AM
That map is not suitable for the result you want: it's all of Africa.
At that scale, your 'line' is a hundred miles wide, and those 'points' are a couple of hundred miles across. What are these 'points'? Towns? Crossroads?
There are no details: none of the rivers he's going to have to cross or avoid, none of the cliffs, ravines or other features he's going to have to deal with. No indications of how he's going to deal with trying to hunt in unfamiliar surroundings, but it's going to slow him down.
You need the details to get the distances, 'mileage' itself is not really relevant.

Are African Wild Dogs scent-hounds or sight-hounds?

How is he tracking the pups? Presumably they've been put on a vehicle at some point? (Assuming he could track the vehicle, is he running along the side of roads?)
Dogs following a scent-trail spend quite a bit of time casting back and forth, trying to make sure they're on the scent. It's not a flat-out run.

Helix
07-24-2016, 08:38 AM
Get yourself to Google Maps, right click on the starting location, then right click on every waypoint until you get to the end location. That will give you an idea of the distance. Then divide by 35 to get the minimum number of hours required to follow that track unerringly at top speed without pausing.

If you zoom in, you'll get an idea of the terrain. You can also see photos of the areas crossed, plus there's coverage of quite a lot of Botswana and South Africa in Street View.

There's plenty of information available about eastern and southern Africa.

I don't know how a big a threat the illegal pet trade is to African wild dogs. Killing to protect stock, yes, but is the pet trade really that significant a threat?

BDSEmpire
07-24-2016, 09:59 AM
According to this paper, http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160329/ncomms11034/full/ncomms11034.html an average distance would be about 13km in a day (with significant variability of +/- 7km). I roughed out the line you traced in google maps and it comes to 4682.78km of distance to go from Northeastern Kenya down to the Northern part of South Africa. If we pretend that your dog managed the average distance day after day then it would take 4682.78km / 13km per day = 360.2 days or a little over a year.

This is a wildly optimistic timeframe. There are big monsoon seasons that will limit travel as well as natural obstacles like rivers, lakes, mountains, etc.