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Belarus at a glance

According to a paper published in Natural Resources by the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus: In 1915-1925, 4000 wolves were registered in the republic. In 1930’s, 25-30% from the registered number were shot annually and this number decreased to 2500-3000. By the end of World War II the number of wolves was near 4,000 within the present borders of Belarus. In 1946-1950, 2,840 wolves were shot annually. Decline of harvest started from 1970, when 243 wolves were killed by people. Decline of the wolf number continued during 1967-1968, when near 420 wolves were registered. Decline of the harvest, campaign for wolf protection, increasing densities of ungulates, all this resulted in the increase of wolf number by 12…37% and 2,850 predators were registered in 1979. The highest number of wolves (2,680) were killed in 1980. In 1980-1988, 77…105 % wolves from the number before beginning biological year were harvested and the wolf number decreased annually from 1.5 to 9 percent. In 1989, 1,720 wolves were registered. In 1990s deep economic crisis led to sharp harvest decline by 40% from the registered number. In 1996-1998, 2100-2200 wolves were registered in Belarus according to the official statistics, but actually it might be two times as much. The density of wolves is different in northern, central and southern parts of Belarus. Protective conditions are more important in the northern part of the republic, feeding and protective conditions are important in the central part and only feeding conditions are more important in the southern part. This is due to different natural factors and antropogenic impact.

The article summarized above was written by S.V. Kuchmel and titled “Distribution of the wolves in Belarus, 1915-1998.”

This article, which appeared in International Wolf, features a personal story by Shannon Barber-Meyer.

This article is titled “A Bold Conservation and Management Plan” and covers Belarus. It Pages from 2007 spring was written by Dr. Vadim Sidorovich and published in International Wolf.

Among the best sources for more information is this blog, operated by Dr. Sidorovich in Belarus.

Species Information


Common Names: gray wolf, wilk (Russian)
Latin Name: Canis lupus

Latin Name: Canis lupus lupus

Current Wolf Population, Trend, Status
Number of wolves: Estimated to be between 1,500 and 1,800, according to this article in International Wolf.

Population trend:Uncertain. It varies year to year and depends in large part on how many wolves are killed in hunting seasons and pup mortality.

Legal protection: According to Dr. Vidam Sidorovich in Belarus, wolves are considered a game species with almost no protection. Since 2008, hunting of the species was limited in the reserves larger than 400 square kilometers, he said. 

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