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Fall 2013

International Wolf Fall 2013 MagazineFeatures

How Not to Find a Wolf Den
by L. David Mech

A five-day odyssey, spanning 58 hours without decent sleep or meals, taught these researchers one thing—how not to find a wolf den.

Tales From a Wolf Manager
by Mike Jimenez

Central to wolf recovery under the Endangered Species Act was the promise that, once wolves were recovered, public hunting would be a management tool for controlling expanding wolf populations. Today, however, some wolf advocates have forgotten that promise.

Counting Wolves, Not a Perfect Science
by Jess Edberg

Taking into consideration the time of year when wolf counts occur is critical to wolf management. Because wolf populations fluctuate during
the year, peaking in late spring before hitting a low in late winter, many states count wolves in winter.

Departments

From the Executive Director
by Rob Schultz

In a few short weeks wolf experts from 19 countries will arrive in Duluth, Minnesota, for our long-awaited International Wolf Symposium 2013. More than a year in the making, this event should be on everyone’s bucket list. CNN founder Ted Turner will kick off our symposium, and many other experts and luminaries will be there to present some truly fascinating topics.

Tracking the Pack

Biology 1476–Wolf Ethology
by Lori Schmidt, wolf curator, International Wolf Center

In a post-pup year, we spend a significant amount of time analyzing the behavior of our captive wolves to determine how the newest members of the Exhibit Pack are progressing. With the 2012 pups, Luna’s medical challenges and Boltz’s age at the time of acquisition were concerns as they joined the pack. As a policy at our facility, wolf management priorities are established based not only on pack dynamics but also on the quality of life for each individual wolf. To make these decisions, we must have sound data that is acquired through unbiased, uniform behavioral observation periods. Thanks to Vermilion Community College’s Biology 1476– Wolf Ethology course, we got that data in April 2013. Vermilion’s students logged more than 100 hours of observations.

Wolves of the World

Ecotourism in Ethiopia—Turning Wolves into Honey
by Alyson Baker

We left for Ethiopia with some uncertainty; we were hoping to see the rangy, rodent-hunting wolves1 but knew their numbers were falling. But even if we were lucky enough to see these endangered animals, we wondered what impact our presence might have. Nancy Gibson, International Wolf Center board member, had suggested ecotourism might be the best solution for saving them in “Hiking the Roof of Africa in Search of Ethiopian Wolves,” International Wolf, Fall 2011, but could human encroachment on wolf territory be hindering their conservation?

Personal Encounter

Wolves and Coyote
Text and photos by Stan Tekiela

Editor’s note: This article is reprinted from Nature Smart Wildlife with the author’s permission.

I inadvertently once saved the life of a coyote. I know that sounds a bit strange; however, if you knew me, it might not sound so strange. As a naturalist and wildlife photographer I tend to get into some very interesting situations. In 2012 I returned to Yellowstone National Park for a second winter adventure. As always the landscape photography opportunities were amazing, but I was there for the wildlife, in particular the wolves.

Wild Kids

Wolves live together in family groups. These groups are called packs. Packs of wolves hunt within their habitat to find food.

A Look Beyond

The Grand Bargain
by Steve Grooms

Because wolves have done so well in the Rocky Mountains it is easy to forget what a difficult struggle was required to restore them. That battle was fought for about 15 years, from 1980 until 1995. Having waged a deadly campaign to eliminate wolves from the West in earlier decades, livestock producers were fiercely opposed to seeing them come back.