Throughout history, stories and tales have depicted wolves as being bad or evil. In reality, they are a necessary creature to keep the balance of nature and they are the ancestors of our domesticated dogs.
Interesting facts about wolves:
Wolves are meat-eaters and are listed as carnivores. They are the biggest members of the Canid family and once lived in all parts of the Northern Hemisphere.
- Wolves are social creatures among their own group or ‘pack’ but cautious and shy in relation to human beings.
- Wolves are not domesticated, they are completely wild.
Wolves that are common are the timber wolf and the gray wolf. Grey wolf adults can grow to 120-200 cm (4-6.56 ft. long) with a weight of 18-79 kg (40-175 lbs.) They have thick gray fur but can also have pure black or solid white fur. The red wolf is another common wolf and is slightly smaller. Other types of wolves include the Great Lakes wolf, also known as the Eastern wolf, the Eastern timber wolf, the deer wolf, and the Algonquin wolf.
- The habitat of wolves tend to be in more remote locations, however the red wolves live in forests, coastal prairies and even swamps.
- Wolves can live in a variety of temperatures of both very cold and very warm.
Wolves team together and both travel and hunt in their packs. A pack usually has one female and male, along with their young and typically total around ten wolves in a pack. The male leader is the alpha male and they will protect their territory against anything that intrudes, including other wolves that are outside of their pack.
- Most wolves do their hunting at night and are called ‘nocturnal’. They sleep during the daytime.
- Only the alpha male and his female mate to have babies. Young wolves are referred to as ‘pups’ and a female can have a litter that can be from 1 to 11 pups.
- Adult members of the entire pack will care for the pups when they are born. By the time they are two years old they are considered adults.
When the wolf population of Yellowstone Park in the U.S. was removed, the various animal populations got out of control, allowing too many animals and not enough food. Wolves controlled the population and kept animals from starving. Wolves were reintroduced to the location and the balance is being brought back.