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Saving The Wolves Of The West
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Saving The Wolves Of the West

Wolves have been given a bad rap throughout history. There have been very few reported attacks by wolves on humans and those that have occurred have been wolves suffering from rabies.

Wolves are the largest member of the Canid family and average between 80 to 100 pounds depending on gender. Wolves are the sole ancestor to the domestic dog. They usually live in packed families and are a very social animal, the pack being made up of a mated pair and their adult offspring.

Wolves howl to sound an alarm, locate each other and to bring the pack together. Wolf howls have been reported to be heard up to 50 square miles.

The efforts of trying to restore the wolf populations in the western U.S. have hit a huge hurdle. The Federal Government has delisted the wolf populations of some western states as an endangered species and have therefore rendered them unprotected by U.S. Federal Law.

Wolves were introduced in some western states to re-populate them into the wild in Yellow Stone Park and other western areas. The re-introduction of these wolves is a success story in itself and is a direct result of the Endangered Species Act which protected them.

Now, this protection has been removed in some western states, Wyoming for one, and it has been left up to these states to control their wolf populations. Wyoming has decided to control their population by letting anyone shoot, gas or trap wolves in about 85 percent of the state. A permit or license is not even required!

Wyoming could stand to lose up to half of it's wolf population outside of Yellowstone Park. This could be a disaster for our entire population as a whole, leading to very small numbers and a possible gene pool dilution. If there is any kind of disaster, our entire wolf population could go extinct.

Wolves are an important part of the biological balance, in which they will usually cull out the sick or weaker prey in a herd. They will usually hunt for deer, elk, mule deer, sheep and caribou. The problem comes when ranchers believe that their herds are being hunted by wolves. Wolves are not picky eaters and will resort to eating fox, ground squirrels, voles, mice and other rodents. They will also eat fruits and vegetables if they are available. Wolves can survive without food for a long time, often going for up to two weeks without affecting them.

Protection of all wolves in the wild is necessary. There are ways for them to co-exist with humans without adversely affecting rancher's livestock. There are also programs and organisations that offer tools to help this partnership.


Street Talk

What an awesome picture. Article is also awesome.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

I just found out today that 7 wolves from Yellowstone Park were killed and 5 of them had radio collars for scientific data collection. For some reason people can't phathom the fact that once other species go extinct, they will eventually follow. The geologic records show this throughout history!

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Interesting article on wolves, James.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Thanks Eugene, I just hope it's not too late!

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Admittedly wolves can be scary because they hunt in packs and can take down large animals, but they do have their place in the ecosystem and we should value them for their contribution--the overgrowth of pronghorn's for example.

Reply
  about 6 years ago

Thanks for your comment , I agree, they help keep a balance in nature that is hard for humans to understand for some reason.

Reply
  about 6 years ago
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