Other than hunting to eat, wolves are usually not aggressive. However, they want to fight other animals and other wolves in order to protect their pack. This is where the stories come of wolves being violent killers. Right now the biggest threat is to them and not to other animals or humans. The reduction of their habitat has created a great deal of hardship for the wolves.
- The alpha male and female are generally in a pack of wolves that will mate.
- The entire pack of wolves is responsible for the care of the young.
The average lifespan of a wolf in the wild is from 6 to 8 years. However, in captivity they can live up to 16 years. They do not seem to have problems with life in captivity. Most of the locations where they are kept try to keep the habitat as natural as they possibly can for them. It is illegal in many areas to sell the pelts of the wolf. However, they were still worth the money on the black market.
It may surprise you to learn that in the United States they were almost hunted to the point of extinction. Breeding programs with the Red Wolves have allowed them to start to repopulate. At one point in the 1980’s there were wiped out in the wild, with those remaining only in captivity. Through programs to introduce them to new environments they now live in North Carolina.
Today may be considered endangered. In some areas they have been reduced to the risk of becoming extinct. There have been efforts in Colorado and other states to reintroduce certain species of wolves to given locations. So far those programs have been successful. However, it may not be enough to help these animals off the list of endangered species any time soon.
Wolves have a very complex social structure. There is a different hierarchy for both the times and the females that belong to it. Contrary to popular belief, there is no constant fighting within a pack to get to the top of the rankings. Instead, this type of social structure actually helps to keep the focus on survival for the entire pack.
Learning the various facts about wolves is a great way to stop the misconceptions about them out there. Here are some fabulous facts that will help you to understand them in a new light.
- Wolves very seldom ever attack humans, but there are lots of stories out there about them and humans in the wild. The alpha male and female are generally in a pack of wolves that will mate. They are the leaders of the pack. The entire pack of wolves is responsible for the care of the young. They are born in the morning of their mothers and want to stay there for the first four weeks of life. The pups only weigh about one pound each at birth. The average life span of a wolf in the wild is from 6 to 13 years. In captivity they can live up to 16-20 years.
- The home range for a pack of wolves can be from 33 to 6,200 km2.
- They can run up to 35 miles per hour for short periods of time. This can be up to 20 minutes. Most of the time they are moving to a slow pace of about 5 miles per hour.
- There are 42 teeth in the mouth of a full grown wolf.
- They indians saw the wolf as a very powerful animal and one they had a great deal of respect for.
- Wolves shed their coats just like other canines. Generally this will occur in the spring time when the temperatures are warmer and they do not need it to be as thick.
- A wolf has a sense of smell well developed.
- Wolves live in packs that can have from 12 to 40 members in them. They have a very complicated level of social ranking. There is a separate ranking for the females of a given pack.
- The wolf uses its tail in the winter time to help keep you warm.
- Approximately 1/3 of the life of a wolf wants to spend moving around their home area territory. They can roam up to 125 miles in a given day to look for food.
- Some people say it's a great way to have something exotic. They are as good as they are but very hard to domesticate a wolf. They always have their wild instincts in them. During the winter months, it may be moving around during the day. The rest of the year they are nocturnal.
- There are some lone wolves out there that live alone. They do not scent mark or howl though. They live off of very small animals looking for the fact that they have to hunt on their own.
- When a couple of wolves mate, they will continue to be a couple until one of them dies. In many instances the pair wants to have many years together, offering a litter of young for several years.
- Young wolves are ready to go on hunts with the adults when they are about three months old. Generally they are not concerned with the take down of the prey at that age. It is mostly a learning process for them to observe.