Wolves will kill for more space, new USU study finds
by Amy Joi O’Donoghue
Having your own space not only brings peace of mind, but it also correlates strongly to a greater chance of survival for wolf families at Yellowstone National Park.
A new study involving Logan’s Utah State University and University of Oxford found wolves will fight to the death to protect their turf if they lack adequate space to raise their pups.
The aggressive behavior of families looking out for their own is not limited to wolves, or the wilds of nature, said researcher Dan MacNulty, a USU ecologist and assistant professor in the Department of Wildland Resources.
"These family groups of wolves that are competing with each other for space and resources. That is not unlike humans," he said. "It is well-demonstrated that chimpanzees will compete and war with each other over space and resources and certainly humans are known to do so, if in a more sophisticated way."
The study, published in the online issue of the Journal of Animal Ecology in the British Ecological Society, followed 280 collared wolves in northern Yellowstone for 13 years.
"This study produced a generally novel result because the conventional thinking is that large carnivores are limited by the abundance of prey in a given area," MacNulty said. "But what these wolves are ultimately limited by is the amount of space they have to raise their pups in safety."
Dhole (Cuon alpinus)
The dhole, also called the Asiatic wild dog or Indian wild dog, is a species of canid native to South and Southeast Asia. The dholes are classed as endangered by the IUCN, due to ongoing habitat loss, depletion of its prey base, competition from other predators, persecution and possibly diseases from domestic and feral dogs. The dhole is a highly social animal, living in large clans which occasionally split up into small packs to hunt. It primarily preys on medium-sized ungulates, which it hunts by tiring them out in long chases, and kills by disemboweling them. Unlike most social canids (but similar to African wild dogs), dholes let their pups eat first at a kill. Though fearful of humans, dhole packs are bold enough to attack large and dangerous animals such as wild boar, water buffalo, and even tigers.
photo credits: Sudhir Shivaram at thejunglelook,
Jackals are omnivorous, eating anything from grass and berries to small birds and animals they’ve hunted alone or in a pack. They also scavenge off of kills made by large carnivores. Their calls are often heard at night when they communicate with each other through yelps, whines, woofs, and cackles.
Long Days of Winter by Bruck Shreck
After a long time of laying around on the only dirt mound around……. He finally got up and gave that long Distance look of now what do I do???
For the second year in a row, young wolves have been spotted in Gartow (Niedersachen, Germany)
Seven pups were counted on the picture above that a camera trap took. Last year there were six. In Niedersachen, four packs are registered - three of them had pups this year.
The scenery in Gartow is no vast wilderniss. It exists out of agriculture, several large forestry complexes, and relatively small-scale agricultural landscape.
Anonymous said: wow, i had known that grey foxes were genetically different from other foxes but seeing a side by side comparison was really helpful! thanks!
Not a problem! It’s true gray foxes are genetically different from those of the Vulpes genus. Gray foxes are actually a primitive species of canine and have really neat looking skulls :3
- Red fox (Vulpes vulpes)
- Gray fox (Urocyon cinereoargenteus)
Sub-adult Ethiopian wolf (Canis simensis) waking up in Sanetti Platau (Bale Mountains National park in Ethiopia)
Picture by Burrard Lucas
July 29, 2014
Pocatello, ID — Faced with a legal challenge by conservationists and an imminent hearing before a federal appeals court, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (“IDFG”) has abandoned its plan to resume a professional wolf-killing program in the Frank Church-River of No Return Wilderness during the coming winter. Read more…