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Walker's Mammals of the World. Ethiopian dwarf mongoose H. Viral diseases carried by wolves include rabies , canine distemper , canine parvovirus , infectious canine hepatitis , papillomatosis , canine coronavirus ,  and foot and mouth disease. David The follicles present on the guard hairs from the wolf's back have clusters of apocrine and sebaceous glands at their bases.
Large prey, such as moose, is killed by biting large chunks of flesh from the soft perineum area, causing massive blood loss. With small, mouse -like prey, wolves leap in a high arc and immobilize it with their forepaws.
Such instances are common in domestic animals, but rare in the wild. In the wild, surplus killing primarily occurs during late winter or spring, when snow is unusually deep thus impeding the movements of prey  or during the denning period, when wolves require a ready supply of meat when denbound. Once prey is brought down, wolves begin to feed excitedly, ripping and tugging at the carcass in all directions, and bolting down large chunks of it.
When food is scarce, this is done at the expense of other family members, especially non-pups.
Once the breeding pair has finished eating, the rest of the family tears off pieces of the carcass and transport them to secluded areas where they can eat in peace. Wolves typically commence feeding by consuming the larger internal organs of their prey, such as the heart , liver , lungs and stomach lining. The kidneys and spleen are eaten once they are exposed, followed by the muscles.
The gray wolf's expressive behavior is more complex than that of the coyote and golden jackal, as necessitated by its group living and hunting habits. While less gregarious canids generally possess simple repertoires of visual signals, wolves have more varied signals that subtly inter grade in intensity.
Passive submission usually occurs as a reaction to the approach of a dominant animal , and consists of the submissive wolf lying partly on its back and allowing the dominant wolf to sniff its anogenital area. Active submission occurs often as a form of greeting, and involves the submissive wolf approaching another in a low posture, and licking the other wolf's face. The mouthing of each other's muzzles is a friendly gesture, while clamping on the muzzle with bared teeth is a dominance display.
Similar to humans, gray wolves have facial color patterns in which the gaze direction can be easily identified, although this is often not the case in other canid species. In , a study compared the facial color pattern across 25 canid species. The results suggested that the facial color pattern of canid species is related to their gaze communication, and that especially gray wolves use the gaze signal in conspecific communication.
Gray wolves howl to assemble the pack usually before and after hunts , to pass on an alarm particularly at a den site , to locate each other during a storm or unfamiliar territory and to communicate across great distances. Pups almost never howl, while yearling wolves produce howls ending in a series of dog-like yelps. The pitch usually remains constant or varies smoothly, and may change direction as many as four or five times.
When pursuing prey, they emit a higher pitched howl, vibrating on two notes. When closing in on their prey, they emit a combination of a short bark and a howl. The two are however mutually intelligible , as North American wolves have been recorded to respond to European-style howls made by biologists. Other vocalisations of wolves are usually divided into three categories: Wolves do not bark as loudly or continuously as dogs do, but bark a few times and retreat from perceived danger. Pups commonly growl when playing.
One variation of the howl is accompanied by a high pitched whine, which precedes a lunging attack. Olfaction is probably the wolf's most acute sense, and plays a fundamental role in communication. The wolf has a large number of apocrine sweat glands on the face, lips, back, and between the toes.
The odor produced by these glands varies according to the individual wolf's microflora and diet, giving each a distinct "odor fingerprint". A combination of apocrine and eccrine sweat glands on the feet allows the wolf to deposit its scent whilst scratching the ground, which usually occurs after urine marking and defecation during the breeding season.
The follicles present on the guard hairs from the wolf's back have clusters of apocrine and sebaceous glands at their bases. As the skin on the back is usually folded, this provides a microclimate for bacterial propagation around the glands. During piloerection, the guard hairs on the back are raised and the skin folds spread, thus releasing scent. The precaudal scent glands may play a role in expressing aggression, as combative wolves raise the base of their tails whilst drooping the tip, thus positioning the scent glands at the highest point.
The components of anal sac secretions vary according to season and gender, thus indicating that the secretions provide information related to gender and reproductive state. The secretions of the preputial glands may advertise hormonal condition or social position, as dominant wolves have been observed to stand over subordinates, apparently presenting the genital area for investigation,  which may include genital licking.
During the breeding season, female wolves secrete substances from the vagina , which communicate the females' reproductive state, and can be detected by males from long distances. Urine marking is the best-studied means of olfactory communication in wolves.
Its exact function is debated, though most researchers agree that its primary purpose is to establish boundaries. Wolves urine mark more frequently and vigorously in unfamiliar areas, or areas of intrusion, where the scent of other wolves or canids is present.
So-called raised leg urination RLU is more common in male wolves than in females, and may serve the purpose of maximizing the possibility of detection by conspecifics, as well as reflect the height of the marking wolf.
Only dominant wolves typically use RLU, with subordinate males continuing to use the juvenile standing posture throughout adulthood. The gray wolf is a habitat generalist, and can occur in deserts , grasslands , forests and arctic tundras. Habitat use by gray wolves is strongly correlated with the abundance of prey, snow conditions, absence or low livestock densities, road densities, human presence and topography.
The warmth of the footpads is regulated independently of the rest of the body, and is maintained at just above tissue-freezing point where the pads come in contact with ice and snow.
During the autumn-spring period, when wolves are more active, they willingly lie out in the open, whatever their location. Actual dens are usually constructed for pups during the summer period. When building dens, females make use of natural shelters such as fissures in rocks, cliffs overhanging riverbanks and holes thickly covered by vegetation.
Sometimes, the den is the appropriated burrow of smaller animals such as foxes, badgers or marmots. An appropriated den is often widened and partly remade. On rare occasions, female wolves dig burrows themselves, which are usually small and short with 1—3 openings. The odour of urine and rotting food emanating from the denning area often attracts scavenging birds such as magpies and ravens.
As there are few convenient places for burrows, wolf dens are usually occupied by animals of the same family. Though they mostly avoid areas within human sight, wolves have been known to nest near domiciles , paved roads and railways.
Although wolves primarily feed on medium to large sized ungulates , they are not fussy eaters. Smaller sized animals that may supplement the diet of wolves include marmots , hares , badgers , foxes , weasels , ground squirrels , mice , hamsters , voles and other rodents , as well as insectivores. They frequently eat waterfowl and their eggs. When such foods are insufficient, they prey on lizards , snakes , frogs , rarely toads and large insects as available.
In times of scarcity, wolves readily eat carrion , visiting cattle burial grounds and slaughter houses. In Eurasia, many gray wolf populations are forced to subsist largely on livestock and garbage in areas with dense human activity, though wild ungulates such as moose , red deer , roe deer and wild boar are still the most important food sources in Russia and the more mountainous regions of Eastern Europe.
Other prey species include reindeer , argali , mouflon , wisent , saiga , ibex , chamois , wild goats , fallow deer and musk deer. Animals preferred as prey by North American wolves include moose, white-tailed deer , elk , mule deer , bighorn sheep , Dall's sheep , American bison , muskox and caribou.
Wolves supplement their diet with fruit and vegetable matter. They willingly eat the berries of mountain ash , lily of the valley , bilberries , blueberries and cowberry. Other fruits include nightshade , apples and pears. They readily visit melon fields during the summer months. Gray wolves typically dominate other canid species in areas where they both occur.
In North America, incidents of gray wolves killing coyotes are common, particularly in winter, when coyotes feed on wolf kills. Wolves may attack coyote den sites, digging out and killing their pups, though rarely eating them. There are no records of coyotes killing wolves, though coyotes may chase wolves if they outnumber them.
Brown bears typically dominate wolf packs in disputes over carcasses, while wolf packs mostly prevail against bears when defending their den sites. Both species kill each other's young. Wolves eat the brown bears they kill, while brown bears seem to only eat young wolves. The majority of black bear encounters with wolves occur in the species' northern range, with no interactions being recorded in Mexico. Wolves have been recorded on numerous occasions to actively seek out black bears in their dens and kill them without eating them.
Unlike brown bears, black bears frequently lose against wolves in disputes over kills. Wolves may encounter striped hyenas in Israel, Central Asia and India, usually in disputes over carcasses. Striped hyenas feed extensively on wolf-killed carcasses in areas where the two species interact.
One-to-one, hyenas dominate wolves, and may prey on them,  but wolf packs can drive off single or outnumbered hyenas. Large wolf populations limit the numbers of small to medium-sized felines. Wolves encounter cougars along portions of the Rocky Mountains and adjacent mountain ranges.
Wolves and cougars typically avoid encountering each other by hunting on different elevations. In winter, however, when snow accumulation forces their prey into valleys, interactions between the two species become more likely.
Wolves in packs usually dominate cougars and can steal kills. They have been reported killing mothers and their kittens. Wolves may kill lynxes by running them down, or killing them before they can escape into trees. Leftovers of wolf kills are sometimes scavenged by wolverines. Wolverines usually wait until the wolves are done feeding, but have been known to drive away wolves from kills.
However, there have been confirmed reports of wolf packs killing wolverines. Other than humans, tigers appear to be the only serious predators of wolves. Wolves appear capable of escaping competitive exclusion from tigers only when human persecution decreases tiger numbers.
Proven cases of tigers killing wolves are rare and attacks appear to be competitive rather than predatory in nature, with at least four proven records of tigers killing wolves without consuming them. However, deliberate human persecution has reduced the species' range to about one-third, because of livestock predation and fear of attacks on humans. In modern times, the gray wolf occurs mostly in wilderness and remote areas, particularly in Canada, Alaska and the northern U.
Wolf population declines have been arrested since the s, and have fostered recolonization and reintroduction in parts of its former range, due to legal protection, changes in land-use and rural human population shifts to cities.
Competition with humans for livestock and game species, concerns over the danger posed by wolves to people, and habitat fragmentation pose a continued threat to the species.
Despite these threats, because of the gray wolf's relatively widespread range and stable population, it is classified as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List. In Europe, the oldest gray wolf remains were found in France and date to ,—, years ago. The extermination of Northern Europe 's wolves first became an organized effort during the Middle Ages , and continued until the late 19th century.
In England , wolf eradication was enforced by legislation , and the last wolf was killed in the early 16th century during the reign of Henry VII. Wolves lasted longer in Scotland , where they sheltered in vast tracts of forest, which were subsequently burned down. Wolves managed to survive in the forests of Braemar and Sutherland until The extirpation of wolves in Ireland followed a similar course, with the last wolf believed to have been killed in The Sami extirpated wolves in northern Sweden in organized drives.
By , few wolves remained in Sweden, because of the use of snowmobiles in hunting them, with the last specimen being killed in The gray wolf was exterminated in Denmark in and Norway's last wolf was killed in The species was decimated in 20th century Finland, despite regular dispersals from Russia.
The gray wolf was only present in the eastern and northern parts of Finland by , though its numbers increased after World War II. In Central Europe , wolves were dramatically reduced in number during the early 19th century, because of organized hunts and reductions in ungulate populations. In Bavaria , the last wolf was killed in , and had disappeared from the Rhine regions by Today, wolves have returned to the area. The louveterie was abolished after the French Revolution in , but was reestablished in In , up to 1, wolves were killed, with many more by poison.
In Eastern Europe , wolves were never fully exterminated, because of the area's contiguity with Asia and its large forested areas. However, Eastern European wolf populations were reduced to very low numbers by the late 19th century. Wolves were extirpated in Slovakia during the first decade of the 20th century and, by the midth century, could only be found in a few forested areas in eastern Poland.
Wolves in the eastern Balkans benefitted from the region's contiguity with the former Soviet Union and large areas of plains, mountains and farmlands. Wolves in Hungary occurred in only half the country around the start of the 20th century, and were largely restricted to the Carpathian Basin. Wolf populations in Romania remained largely substantial, with an average of 2, wolves being killed annually out of a population of 4, from — An all-time low was reached in , when the population was reduced to 1, animals.
The extermination of wolves in Bulgaria was relatively recent, as a previous population of about 1, animals in was reduced to about — in In Greece, the species disappeared from the southern Peloponnese in Despite periods of intense hunting during the 18th century, wolves never disappeared in the western Balkans, from Albania to the former Yugoslavia.
In Southern Europe , wolf extermination was not as complete as in Northern Europe, because of greater cultural tolerance of the species. Wolf populations only began declining in the Iberian Peninsula in the early 19th century, and was reduced by a half of its original size by Wolf bounties were regularly paid in Italy as late as The recovery of European wolf populations began after the s, when traditional pastoral and rural economies declined and thus removed the need to heavily persecute wolves.
By the s, small and isolated wolf populations expanded in the wake of decreased human density in rural areas and the recovery of wild prey populations.
The gray wolf has been fully protected in Italy since , and now holds a population of over 1,—1, By the wolves in the Western Alps imposed a significant burden on traditional sheep and goat husbandry with a loss of over 5, animals in In Spain , the species occurs in Galicia , Leon , and Asturias.
Although hundreds of Iberian wolves are illegally killed annually, the population has expanded south across the river Duero and east to the Asturias and Pyrenees Mountains. In , wolves began recolonising central Sweden after a twelve-year absence, and have since expanded into southern Norway. As of , the total number of Swedish and Norwegian wolves is estimated to be at least one hundred, including eleven breeding pairs. The gray wolf is fully protected in Sweden and partially controlled in Norway.
The Scandinavian wolf populations owe their continued existence to neighbouring Finland's contiguity with the Republic of Karelia , which houses a large population of wolves. Furthermore, the decline in the moose populations has reduced the wolf's food supply. Wolf populations in Poland have increased to about — individuals since being classified as a game species in Poland plays a fundamental role in providing routes of expansion into neighbouring Central European countries.
In the east, its range overlaps with populations in Lithuania, Belarus , Ukraine , and Slovakia. A population in western Poland expanded into eastern Germany and in the first pups were born on German territory. A few Slovakian wolves disperse into the Czech Republic, where they are afforded full protection. Wolves in Slovakia, Ukraine and Croatia may disperse into Hungary, where the lack of cover hinders the buildup of an autonomous population.
Although wolves have special status in Hungary, they may be hunted with a year-round permit if they cause problems. Romania has a large population of wolves, numbering 2, animals. The wolf has been a protected animal in Romania since , although the law is not enforced. The number of wolves in Albania and Macedonia is largely unknown, despite the importance the two countries have in linking wolf populations from Greece to those of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia.
Although protected, sometimes wolves are still illegally killed in Greece, and their future is uncertain.
Wolf numbers have declined in Bosnia and Herzegovina since , while the species is fully protected in neighbouring Croatia and Slovenia. Although wolf-dog hybridization in Europe has raised concern among conservation groups fearing for the gray wolf's purity, genetic tests show that introgression of dog genes into European gray wolf populations does not pose a significant threat. Also, as wolf and dog mating seasons do not fully coincide, the likelihood of wild wolves and dogs mating and producing surviving offspring is small.
During the 19th century, gray wolves were widespread in many parts of the Holy Land east and west of the Jordan River. However, they decreased considerably in number between and , largely because of persecution by farmers. Soviet wolf populations reached a low around , disappearing over much of European Russia.
The population increased again by to about 75,, with 32, being killed in By the s, wolf extermination remained a priority in the NWP and Awadh.
Overall, over , wolves were killed for bounties in British India between and The wolf was deemed a threat to ranching, which the Meiji government promoted at the time, and targeted via a bounty system and a direct chemical extermination campaign inspired by the similar contemporary American campaign.
The last Japanese wolf was a male killed on January 23, near Washikaguchi now called Higashi Yoshiro. Japanese wolves likely underwent a process of island dwarfism 7,—13, years ago in response to these climatological and ecological pressures.
There is little reliable data on the status of wolves in the Middle East , save for those in Israel and Saudi Arabia , though their numbers appear to be stable, and are likely to remain so. Israel's conservation policies and effective law enforcement maintain a moderately sized wolf population, which radiates into neighbouring countries, while Saudi Arabia has vast tracts of desert, where about — wolves live undisturbed.
The mountains of Turkey have served as a refuge for the few wolves remaining in Syria. A small wolf population occurs in the Golan Heights , and is well protected by the military activities there.
Wolves living in the southern Negev desert are contiguous with populations living in the Egyptian Sinai and Jordan.
Throughout the Middle East, the species is only protected in Israel. Elsewhere, it can be hunted year-round by Bedouins. Little is known of current wolf populations in Iran, which once occurred throughout the country in low densities during the mids. The northern regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan are important strongholds for the wolf. Overall, India supports about , wolves, scattered among several remnant populations. Although protected since , Indian wolves are classed as endangered, with many populations lingering in low numbers or living in areas increasingly used by humans.
Although present in Nepal and Bhutan , there is no information of wolves occurring there. Wolf populations throughout Northern and Central Asia are largely unknown, but are estimated in the hundreds of thousands based on annual harvests.
Since the fall of the Soviet Union , continent-wide extermination of wolves has ceased, and wolf populations have increased to about 25,—30, animals throughout the former Soviet Union. In China and Mongolia , wolves are only protected in reserves. Mongolian populations have been estimated at 10,—30,, while the status of wolves in China is more fragmentary. The north has a declining population of an estimated wolves, while Xinjiang and Tibet hold about 10, and 2, respectively.
It exists in southern China, which refutes claims made by some researchers in the Western world that the wolf had never existed in southern China. It occurred all over the mainland, save for the southeastern United States, California west of the Sierra Nevada , and the tropical and subtropical areas of Mexico.
Large continental islands occupied by wolves included Newfoundland , Vancouver Island , southeastern Alaskan islands, and throughout the Arctic Archipelago and Greenland. In his November 6, letter to the French Minister of the Marine, Louis Denys de La Ronde reported that the island was home to wolves "of a prodigious size", and sent a wolf pelt back to France to substantiate his claim.
As the island was cleared for settlement, the gray wolf population may have been extirpated, or relocated to the mainland across the winter ice: The decline of North American wolf populations coincided with increasing human populations and the expansion of agriculture. By the start of the 20th century, the species had almost disappeared from the eastern U. In Canada, the gray wolf was extirpated in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia between and , and in Newfoundland around It vanished from the southern regions of Quebec and Ontario between and The gray wolf's decline in the prairies began with the extermination of the American bison and other ungulates in the s—70s.
From —, the gray wolf was virtually eliminated from the western U. The gray wolf was exterminated by federal and state governments from all of the U. The decline in North American wolf populations was reversed from the s to the early s, particularly in southwestern Canada, because of expanding ungulate populations resulting from improved regulation of big game hunting. This increase triggered a resumption of wolf control in western and northern Canada.
Thousands of wolves were killed from the early s to the early s, mostly by poisoning. This campaign was halted and wolf populations increased again by the mids.
The species' modern range in North America is mostly confined to Alaska and Canada, with populations also occurring in northern Minnesota, northern and central Wisconsin , Michigan 's Upper Peninsula , and small portions of Washington , Idaho , northern Oregon , and Montana. A functional wolf population should exist in California by according to estimates by state wildlife officials. In addition, the Mexican wolf Canis lupus baileyi was reintroduced to Arizona and New Mexico in Canada is home to about 52,—60, wolves, whose legal status varies according to province and territory.
First Nations residents may hunt wolves without restriction, and some provinces require licenses for residents to hunt wolves while others do not.
In Alberta , wolves on private land may be baited and hunted by the landowner without requiring a license, and in some areas, wolf hunting bounty programs exist.
In Alaska, the gray wolf population is estimated at 6,—7,, and can be legally harvested during hunting and trapping seasons, with bag limits and other restrictions. As of , there are wolves in 28 packs in Yellowstone, and wolves in 25 packs in Idaho. Reintroduced Mexican wolves in Arizona and New Mexico are protected under the ESA and, as of late , number 28 individuals in eight packs.
Viral diseases carried by wolves include rabies , canine distemper , canine parvovirus , infectious canine hepatitis , papillomatosis , canine coronavirus ,  and foot and mouth disease. Infected wolves do not show any fear of humans, with most documented wolf attacks on people being attributed to rabid animals.
Although canine distemper is lethal in dogs, it has not been recorded to kill wolves, except in Canada and Alaska. The canine parvovirus, which causes death by dehydration , electrolyte imbalance , and endotoxic shock or sepsis , is largely survivable in wolves, but can be lethal to pups.
Wolves may catch infectious canine hepatitis from dogs, though there are no records of wolves dying from it. Papillomatosis has been recorded only once in wolves, and likely doesn't cause serious illness or death, though it may alter feeding behaviors.
The canine coronavirus has been recorded in Alaskan wolves, with infections being most prevalent in winter months. Bacterial diseases carried by wolves include brucellosis , lyme disease , leptospirosis , tularemia , bovine tuberculosis ,  listeriosis and anthrax. While adult wolves tend not to show any clinical signs, it can severely weaken the pups of infected females. Although lyme disease can debilitate individual wolves, it does not appear to have any significant effect on wolf populations.
Leptospirosis can be contracted through contact with infected prey or urine, and can cause fever , anorexia , vomiting, anemia , hematuria , icterus , and death. Wolves living near farms are more vulnerable to the disease than those living in the wilderness, probably because of prolonged contact with infected domestic animal waste.
Wolves may catch tularemia from lagomorph prey, though its effect on wolves is unknown. Although bovine tuberculosis is not considered a major threat to wolves, it has been recorded to have once killed two wolf pups in Canada. Wolves carry ectoparasites and endoparasites , with wolves in the former Soviet Union having been recorded to carry at least 50 species.
In areas where wolves inhabit pastoral areas, the parasites can be spread to livestock. Wolves are often infested with a variety of arthropod exoparasites, including fleas , ticks , lice , and mites. The most harmful to wolves, particularly pups, is Sarcoptes scabiei or mange mite ,  though they rarely develop full blown mange , unlike foxes. Ticks of the genus Ixodes can infect wolves with Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Other ectoparasites include biting lice, sucking lice and the fleas Pulex irritans and Ctenocephalides canis.
Endoparasites known to infect wolves include protozoans and helminths flukes , tapeworms , roundworms and thorny-headed worms. Of 30, protozoan species, only a few have been recorded to infect wolves: Isospora , Toxoplasma , Sarcocystis , Babesia , and Giardia. Upon reaching maturity, Alaria migrates to the wolf's intestine, but harms it little. Metorchis conjunctus , which enters wolves through eating fish, infects the wolf's liver or gall bladder, causing liver disease , inflammation of the pancreas, and emaciation.
Most other fluke species reside in the wolf's intestine, though Paragonimus westermani lives in the lungs. Tapeworms are commonly found in wolves, as their primary hosts are ungulates, small mammals, and fish, which wolves feed upon.
Tapeworms generally cause little harm in wolves, though this depends on the number and size of the parasites, and the sensitivity of the host. Symptoms often include constipation , toxic and allergic reactions , irritation of the intestinal mucosa , and malnutrition. Infections by the tapeworm Echinococcus granulosus in ungulate populations tend to increase in areas with high wolf densities, as wolves can shed Echinoccocus eggs in their feces onto grazing areas.
Wolves can carry over 30 roundworm species, though most roundworm infections appear benign, depending on the number of worms and the age of the host. Ancylostoma caninum attaches itself on the intestinal wall to feed on the host's blood, and can cause hyperchromic anemia , emaciation, diarrhea , and possibly death. Toxocara canis , a hookworm known to infect wolf pups in utero, can cause intestinal irritation, bloating, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Wolves can tolerate low levels of Dirofilaria immitis for many years without showing any ill effects, though high levels can kill wolves through cardiac enlargement and congestive hepatopathy.
Wolves probably become infected with Trichinella spiralis by eating infected ungulates. Although T. Nicolla skrjabini , Macrocantorhynchus catulinus , and Moniliformis moniliformis. Human presence appears to stress wolves, as seen by increased cortisol levels in instances such as snowmobiling near their territory. Old English literature contains several instances of Anglo-Saxon kings and warriors taking on wulf as a prefix or suffix in their names.
Wolf-related names were also common among pre-Christian Germanic warriors: The wolf is a common motif in the foundational mythologies and cosmologies of peoples throughout Eurasia and North America corresponding to the historical extent of the habitat of the gray wolf. The obvious attribute of the wolf is its nature of a predator , and correspondingly it is strongly associated with danger and destruction, making it the symbol of the warrior on one hand, and that of the devil on the other.
The modern trope of the Big Bad Wolf is a development of this. The wolf holds great importance in the cultures and religions of the nomadic peoples, both of the Eurasian steppe and of the North American Plains.
In many cultures, the identification of the warrior with the wolf totemism gave rise to the notion of Lycanthropy , the mythical or ritual identification of man and wolf. Aesop featured wolves in several of his fables , playing on the concerns of Ancient Greece 's settled, sheep-herding world. His most famous is the fable of " The Boy Who Cried Wolf ", which is directed at those who knowingly raise false alarms, and from which the idiomatic phrase " to cry wolf " is derived.
Some of his other fables concentrate on maintaining the trust between shepherds and guard dogs in their vigilance against wolves, as well as anxieties over the close relationship between wolves and dogs. Although Aesop used wolves to warn, criticize and moralize about human behavior, his portrayals added to the wolf's image as a deceitful and dangerous animal.
Although portrayed as loyal, honest and moral, Isengrim is forever the victim of Reynard's wit and cruelty, often dying at the end of each story. The tale of Little Red Riding Hood , first written in by Charles Perrault , is largely considered to have had more influence than any other source of literature in forging the wolf's negative reputation in the western world. The wolf in this story is portrayed as a potential rapist , capable of imitating human speech.
Tolstoy's War and Peace and Chekhov's Peasants both feature scenes in which wolves are hunted with hounds and borzois. Although credited with having changed popular perceptions on wolves by portraying them as loving, cooperative and noble, it has been criticized for its idealization of wolves and its factual inaccuracies.
The wolf is a frequent charge in English armory. It is illustrated as a supporter on the shields of Lord Welby , Rendel , and Viscount Wolseley , and can be found on the coat of arms of Lovett and the vast majority of the Wilsons and Lows. The demi-wolf is a common crest , appearing in the arms and crests of members of many families, including that of the Wolfes , whose crest depicts a demi-wolf holding a crown in its paws, in reference to the assistance the family gave to Charles II during the battle of Worcester.
Wolf heads are common in Scottish heraldry , particularly in the coats of Clan Robertson and Skene. The wolf is the most common animal in Spanish heraldry , and is often depicted as carrying a lamb in its mouth, or across its back. It is the unofficial symbol of the spetsnaz , and serves as the logo of the Turkish Grey Wolves.
Livestock depredation has been one of the primary reasons for hunting wolves, and can pose a severe problem for wolf conservation: Being the most abundant carnivores, free-ranging dogs have the greatest potential to compete with wolves. A review of the studies in the competitive effects of dogs on sympatric carnivores did not mention any research on competition between dogs and wolves.
Wolves kill dogs on occasion, with some wolf populations relying on dogs as an important food source. Wolves may display unusually bold behavior when attacking dogs accompanied by people, sometimes ignoring nearby humans. Large hunting dogs such as Swedish elkhounds are more likely to survive wolf attacks because of their better ability to defend themselves.
Although the numbers of dogs killed each year are relatively low, it induces a fear of wolves entering villages and farmyards to take dogs. In many cultures, there are strong social and emotional bonds between humans and their dogs that can be seen as family members or working team members. The loss of a dog can lead to strong emotional responses with demands for more liberal wolf hunting regulations.
Dogs that are employed to guard sheep help to mitigate human—wolf conflicts, and are often proposed as one of the non-lethal tools in the conservation of wolves. The fear of wolves has been pervasive in many societies, though humans are not part of the wolf's natural prey. Predatory attacks attacks by wolves treating humans as food may be preceded by a long period of habituation , in which wolves gradually lose their fear of humans.
The victims are repeatedly bitten on the head and face, and are then dragged off and consumed, unless the wolves are driven off. Such attacks typically occur only locally, and do not stop until the wolves involved are eliminated. Predatory attacks can occur at any time of the year, with a peak in the June—August period, when the chances of people entering forested areas for livestock grazing or berry and mushroom picking increase,  though cases of non-rabid wolf attacks in winter have been recorded in Belarus , Kirov and Irkutsk oblasts, Karelia and Ukraine.
The majority of victims of predatory wolf attacks are children under the age of 18 and, in the rare cases where adults are killed, the victims are almost always women. Cases of rabid wolves are low when compared to other species, as wolves do not serve as primary reservoirs of the disease, but can be infected by animals such as dogs, jackals and foxes.
Incidents of rabies in wolves are very rare in North America, though numerous in the eastern Mediterranean , Middle East and Central Asia. Wolves apparently develop the "furious" phase of rabies to a very high degree which, coupled with their size and strength, makes rabid wolves perhaps the most dangerous of rabid animals,  with bites from rabid wolves being 15 times more dangerous than those of rabid dogs. Most rabid wolf attacks occur in the spring and autumn periods.
Unlike with predatory attacks, the victims of rabid wolves are not eaten, and the attacks generally only occur on a single day. The victims are chosen at random, though the majority of cases involve adult men. During the 50 years to , there were eight fatal attacks in Europe and Russia, and more than in southern Asia.
Wolves are difficult to hunt because of their elusiveness, sharp senses, high endurance, and ability to quickly incapacitate and kill hunting dogs. This method relies heavily on the wolf's fear of human scents, though it can lose its effectiveness when wolves become accustomed to the smell.
Wild wolves are sometimes kept as exotic pets and, in some rarer occasions, as working animals. Although closely related to domesticated dogs , wolves do not show the same tractability as dogs in living alongside humans, and generally, much more work is required in order to obtain the same amount of reliability. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about the gray wolf, Canis lupus, and its subspecies. For other species of wolf and other uses, see Wolf disambiguation.
For other uses, see Grey Wolf disambiguation.
Temporal range: Middle Pleistocene — present ,—0 years BP . Conservation status. Linnaeus , . Main article: Subspecies of Canis lupus. Evolution of the wolf. Canid hybrid. See also: Dog anatomy. Dog behavior. Canine reproduction. Dog communication. Wolves howling. Rallying cry. List of gray wolf populations by country. Play media. Wolves in folklore, religion and mythology.
Wolves in heraldry. Main articles: Wolf attacks on humans and List of wolf attacks. Wolf hunting and Wolf hunting with dogs.
Human uses of hunted wolves. Wolves as pets and working animals. Mammals portal. However, neither dogs nor dingoes are referred to as gray wolves.
Throughout this article, the term "wolf" will be used to refer collectively to naturally occurring subspecies, especially the nominate subspecies, Canis lupus lupus. This terminology was first used in by Rudolf Schenkel of the University of Basel , who based his findings on researching the behavior of captive gray wolves.
This view on gray wolf pack dynamics was later popularized by L. David Mech in his book The Wolf. He formally disavowed this terminology in , explaining that it was heavily based on the behavior of captive packs consisting of unrelated individuals, an error reflecting the once-prevailing view that wild pack formation occurred in winter among independent gray wolves.
Later research on wild gray wolves revealed that the pack is usually a family consisting of a breeding pair and its offspring of the previous 1—3 years. Canidae " PDF. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History.
CS1 maint: Tomus I in Latin 10 ed. Laurentius Salvius. Gray wolf Canis lupus and allies", in Feldhamer, George A. Wild Mammals of North America: In Sillero-Zubiri, C. Foxes, Wolves, Jackals and Dogs. Status Survey and Conservation Action Plan. Gland and Cambridge: Uses authors parameter link CS1 maint: In Wilson, D.
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The annex V allows the management of protected species and an annual quota is establish by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Slovakia, determining the number of wolves to be hunted in the open season 1st of November until the 15th of January. Conservation measures, following European legislation, are being engaged by Slovak government and a new wolf management plan is being implemented.
The creation of protected areas with some of this area near international borders, are of extreme importance and they were specifically designed for the full year protection of wolves. This might turn in a giant step not just for the wolf conservation but also for a sustainable ecosystem conservation. Related Papers. Making Room for Recovery: By Amaroq Weiss. Impact of hybridization with domestic dogs on the conservation of wild canids.
By Jorge Echegaray. The trophic ecology of wolves and their predatory role in ungulate communities of forest ecosystems in Europe. By Henryk Okarma. Genetic diversity and relatedness within packs in an intensely hunted population of wolvesCanis lupus.
A Case- Study in Greece. By Nefta-Eleftheria Votsi.