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Winter 2014





From the Tracks of a Wolf
By Galeo Saintz

By tracking wolf OR-7 for a month, a Wild Peace Alliance team consisting of a storyteller, wildlife tracker, documentary , educator, multimedia producer and conservationist aimed to stimulate conversations about wolf recovery and learn from the people of the land living close to wolves.

The Mexican Wolf/ Livestock Coexistence Plan: An Innovative Solution
By Sherry Barrett and Sisto Hernandez

A Mexican wolf recovery plan in New Mexico and Arizona avoids the problems of traditional compensation programs by instead paying ranchers for the presence of wolves. This innovative program has the potential to resolve a ranchers and conservationists. Download full article.

Shadows of the Wolf
By Robin Whitlock

The Eurasian wolf, sometimes known as the common wolf or Middle Russian forest wolf, was prevalent throughout Britain and Europe in ancient times. While it has long since been extinct in Britain, more than 200 place names in the British Isles might be associated with the former habitation of the Eurasian wolf.


From the Executive Director
by Rob Schultz

In this issue of International Wolf, we’re excited to share the story by Galeo Saintz of Wild Peace Alliance’s 1,200-mile (1,931-kilometer) expedition to retrace the footsteps of OR-7 on his epic two-year journeynia since 1924.Just a few years ago, opportunities like this were not possible. With remarkable advances in technology, scientists and the public are able to track the exact movements of wolves,  providing tremendous detail about how they live and the challenges they encounter.

Tracking the Pack

Management Discussions  Include Winter Tension
by Lori Schmidt, wolf curator, International Wolf Center

When the Wolf Care staff starts preparing for the winter sea-son, discussions about the possibilities of wolf rank-order changes inevitably occur. Wolves are most active in winter, and wolves in captivity tend to increase their dominance displays then while keeping a keen eye on each other for vulnerabilities. We have been through it before. Every time we introduce new pups to the exhibit, we experience the dynamics of pups maturing to yearlings and yearlings maturing to adults. One member of the Wolf Care team is tasked with being prepared for and adapting to any situation that arises. It’s my job as curator to provide insight to the team about key behaviors that might indicate a brewing issue and the management techniques that can be initiated.

Member Profile

Young Member Already Committed to Wolves
by Darcy Berus, Development Director, International Wolf Center

The letter at right is from one of our young International Wolf Center members, Jacob Tepsa, a seventh grader from Altoona, Wisconsin. He is the youngest of  five children and has participated  in several programs at the Interpretive Center in Ely, Minnesota, including a Wolf Trek Bus Trip in 2013 and a Wolf Watch program in 2014.

Wolves of the World

The Persistence of the Iberian Wolf
by Tracy O’Connell

In 1896 when Spanish railway workers gouged a narrow trench through Spain’s Sierra Atapuerca Mountains to join the mines of Sierra de la Demanda with Bilbao’s steel mills, they found more than limestone. Unwittingly, they stumbled upon one of the most astounding archaeological sites of all time: a tools and paintings of our earliest ancestors. Locked between countless layers of sediment, laid down like the pages of the world’s greatest history book, were the secrets to almost one million years of human evolution. Amid the bones of primitive man were those belonging to a myriad of evolving animal species including hyenas, European jaguars, lions and wolves. An estimated 850,000 years later, just one of these species remains—the Iberian wolf.

Personal Encounter

The Wolf and I
Text and photos by Linda Nervick

I woke up in my off-the-grid cabin on Cedar Lake near Ely, Minnesota, with the weight still on me from the  previous day’s announcement that the 2014 John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon -ated with the race for a decade. The night before there had been a full moon, something I love, and I wanted to be at the cabin to take in its full glory. On my way to the cabin that October day, a reporter phoned, wanting to know why the race organizers had canceled the event in its 30th year.


What Inspires You?

Wolves often provide inspiration. Being inspired means that something or someone has influenced you in a way that makes you want makes you want to take action. Heidi Pinkerton, a photographer from Babbitt, Minnesota, found her inspiration in a wolf named Maya. After hearing that Maya, a former ambassador wolf, had passed away in March 2011, Heidi decided to try to photograph the aurora borealis, or northern lights. As she was setting up her camera, a lone wolf howled in the night air. Later that evening Heidi was able to capture pictures of the northern lights. Those pictures were the first of many northern light photographs that Heidi is famous for today.

A Look Beyond

If Only Wolves Could Tweet
by Janet Hoben

Today’s social media platforms afford wolf conservation organizations a powerful way to educate the public about wolves, inspire followers to take action, and raise funds for wolf recovery efforts. But how does the average wolf lover know where to turn for good social media sites?