Wild Wolves

By:Kate McElvany

About Wolves

Wolves are extraordinary animals. There are many different types of wolves that live in many different places such as North America,Europe,Asia,and in the Artic. Wolves are mammals.

Most Red wolves live in Zoos. Only 80 Red wolves live in the wild. Gray wolves and Red Wolves are both in the dog family.

Gray wolves are the largest members of the dog family.Adult wolves can get to 60-100 pounds (lbs) Gray wolves have yellow eyes and a long pointed snout. They have large pointed ears.Wolves have great hearing. It's big outer ears funnel sound to it's inner ears.

Life Cycle

Wolves have a very interesting life cycle.First,wolves mate in early spring. Then , the mother finds a safe,warm place for her babies. The place where the mother gives birth is called a den. She gives birth to 4 to 8 pups around 60 days after they mate. At first, the pup can't see or walk. To keep the pups warm the mother feeds them warm milk. In about 3 to 4 weeks the pups crawl out of the den to meet the pack for the first time. They greet each other by howling and wagging their tails.Everybody helps raise the pups by playing,scolding, and teaching them. aThe pack protects the pups. In about 1 year the pups start to travel and hunt with the pack. They become adults and search for mates and food. Then the life cycle of the wolf starts again.

Wolf vs. Dog

There are many differences between a dog and a wolf. For one,dogs are generally smaller which means that wolves are generally bigger. Most dogs bones,teeth and jaw are also smaller.Wolves tend to be gentler. Wolves weigh more. The grey wolf's jaw is twice as strong as a large dog such as the german shepherd.

Also there are lots of similarities too.Dogs and Wolves have have poor frontal vision and superb peripheral vision. They don't recognize some stationary objects that are far away.Dogs and wolves have a great sense of smell. They're intelligent and capable of learning. They have their own personalities.

Humans and Wolves

One of the problems wolves have are humans. Early settlers hunted buffalo and wolves hunted buffalo. Son soon the buffalo's numbers dropped. Wolves had to hunt ranchers and farmers livestock. The farmers and ranchers hunted the wolves because the wolves were hunting their livestock. They hired gunmen to hunt wolves down. Gunmen put out poisons and traps. Early settlers settled in wolf's habitat. Now there are fewer wild places.There were 1 million wolves in the U.S. Now there are 9,000. Those are some of the the problems that wolves have.

There are solutions to these problems.Laws say that you can't kill wolves. People want to see wolves in the wild. People want to see wolves in the Northeast. Some people make plans against wolves. They want to build houses,roads and hotels.Ranchers and farmers also make plans against them. You can help raise money or join a group that helps endangered animals.

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Bad Impressions on Wolves

Wolves get a bad history. They kill their livestock,but this reason is because of us. In the 1800's settlers began to settle in the Great Plains. Settlers hunted buffalo. Wolves depended on buffalo for food. Wolves were forced to eat cattle and sheep. Settlers,rangers and farmers started killing wolves because of that. They killed 1-2 million wolves. Today there are less than 10,000 wolves in the U.S. Most of them are in Alaska. Canada has 50,000 wolves. They also get bad name because of fairy tales such as Red Riding Hood,The Three Little Pigs and The Boy Who Cried Wolf.