One of Romes rare Italian wolf cubs killed by hit-and-run driver

One of the first wild wolf cubs to be born in Rome in 100 years was run over and killed last week in an incident that a wildlife charity suspects could have been deliberate.

The cub was found lifeless in the Castel di Guido wildlife sanctuary on April 10th, according to the charity that runs it, Lipu, and a post-mortem confirmed that it was killed by blunt force trauma, likely caused by a vehicle.

“Great sorrow for the animal’s death was followed by anger for the evidently non-natural causes of its demise,” Lipu wrote in a statement on Facebook.

The cub, born around a year ago, had a condition that meant it could not use its hind legs. The park’s concealed wildlife cameras filmed it lagging behind the rest of the pack, which never abandoned it despite its disability, Lipu said.

The charity, which has informed the authorities, suspects that a driver may have hit the wolf deliberately.

“It’s hard to believe this was an unintended accident,” its statement said. “It doesn’t seem credible that on a dirt road, where the uneven surface forces you to reduce your speed and yet straight enough that you can see a long way ahead, it wouldn’t be possible to avoid an animal that, due to its physical disability, was moving very slowly.”

Staff didn’t find any skid marks in the mud that would indicate the driver had attempted to swerve, Lipu said.

While the 180-hectare reserve is supposed to be off-limits to all except authorized vehicles, Lipu says that it frequently finds – and reports to the authorities – gates and barriers left open, often when poachers are found to have intruded.

“We cannot exclude the possibility that this time one of these criminals used their car as a hunting weapon instead of a gun, taking out among other things the weakest member of the pack that couldn’t even use escape as its defence.

“It leaves us with great bitterness to see that an incredible effort by the pack, that above all expectations successfully took care of a disabled member of its family, met with on one hand the terrible cruelty of some members of the human species, and on the other the indifference of those responsible for managing such a precious place entrusted to their custody.”

The Castel di Guido had its first wild wolf births in more than a century last year, keeping the litter a secret for months until they were sure of the cubs’ survival.

Wolves are thought to have made their way to the reserve, located to the west of the ring road that surrounds Rome, from the area around Lake Bracciano to the north, which has long had a wolf population.

While the animals are rare in the capital, in recent years they have thrived in more rural parts of Italy, notably the mountainous regions of the Apennines and the Alps.

Their growing numbers have brought them into conflict with farmers, who complain that attacks on livestock have risen sharply. Calls for a cull have so far been met with fierce opposition from environmentalists, who last year blocked a proposal to reduce Italy’s wolf population by five percent.

The European Union will hold a summit on the issue on May 15th, where representatives from South Tyrol and other northern Italian regions will push for greater freedom to manage local wolf populations.

W.O.L.F. Announces New Features, Chapter, International website and General Membership. PLEASE READ!!!

April 2 at 12:50pm · From the W.O.L.F. website.

The World of Lupines Foundation (W.O.L.F.) is excited to announce the advent of several new features: the official launch of our North American chapter; the new international website; additional resources and benefits for our membership; and, for the first time in history of the foundation, W.O.L.F. is offering a general membership option for wolfdog owners and enthusiasts.

W.O.L.F.’s goals are to provide an educational and support network for wolfdog owners, supporters and breeders around the world and to run a global registration service for ethically produced Lupine Dogs. In order to best meet these goals and adhere to the needs of our ever expanding international membership, W.O.L.F. has added localised support services under our ‘zone’ pages on our new website. The website serves as a core information provider about our worldwide organisation, Lupine Dog registration, and provides access to local resources for our North American zone division and our first German language resource page for Continental Europe.

We are please to introduce our new ‘Lupine Classification’ system. This detailed system enables prospective owners to find the Lupine Dog that best matches their lifestyle and environment, whilst also providing our Lupine Dog breeders the opportunity to follow their breeding goals yet remain united under W.O.L.F.’s ethical and responsible breeding practices. You can find more information about the Lupine Classification system and breeder registration on our website.

W.O.L.F. is pleased to announce that we have aligned ourselves with companies such as Embark and other canine retailers around the world to provide our members special discounts on products and services. We have also included a ‘members area’ on our website that is available exclusively to our membership. The ‘members area’ contains our growing database of Lupine Dog information, resources, educational material, and details of member only special offers and events.

W.O.L.F. is looking forward to the summer season and will be kicking off with a series of Education Team appearances at the ‘All About Dogs’ show in the UK this month. Additionally, W.O.L.F. will hold our very first North American show and educational seminar over Labor Day weekend at the Full Moon Farm ‘Pawty’. We hope you will come along and support us in actively promoting a responsible attitude towards Lupine Dog ownership.

To become a member of W.O.L.F., follow the link to their website and click on the ‘membership’ tab at the top. W.O.L.F. wishes you all a fantastic summer season and looks forward to meeting you at their scheduled events. You can find details of W.O.L.F. appearances under ‘News & Events’.

Best wishes
The W.O.L.F. Committee
‘The Lupine Dog: the dog, as nature intended.”

https://www.paypal.me/WorldOfLupines

 

Majority of European Wolves Have Dog DNA, says new research Study.

Photo Credit: Capri23auto via Pixabay.  Mar 22, 2018 | Original Story from the University of Lincoln.

https://www.technologynetworks.com/genomics/news/majority-of-european-wolves-contain-dog-dna-298870#.WrQP4EcIEWA.facebook

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Super Bowl for Amateur Astronomers in January with Wolf Moon, Super Moons and Solar Eclipse coming.

There’s a LOT to like about Coyotes

Truth be told, I like coyotes as much as I like wolves. Especially after two days in Yellowstone one winter gave me the chance to observe coyotes in the wild. I found that coyotes have qualities that would benefit many people. Here’s what I saw and learned:

 

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Hunting Moose in Canada to Save Caribou Reduces Wolf numbers naturally.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/30/science/moose-wolves-caribou.html?smid=fb-share

This over 10 year study in Canada should open a few eyes around the world that the culling of wolves is NOT the answer to increasing Moose, Elk and Deer populations.  One needs to look at the environmental root caused before condemning Wolves to be slaughtered as the cause of herd reduction.

Scientists spent a decade monitoring wolf, moose and endangered mountain caribou populations in the remote rain forests of southern British Columbia. In a study published Tuesday in the journal PeerJ, they found that if you let people hunt more moose, you get fewer wolves and more caribou. While this approach may only be part of the solution for preserving the caribou, it illustrates the complexity of conservation in natural environments.

“The band-aid solution is killing wolves, but that’s been treating the symptom,” said Robert Serrouya, a biologist at The University of Alberta who led the study. “We’re trying to deal with the cause.”

That cause is part of a counterintuitive narrative that goes like this: when a nonnative species wanders into a new place, its predators follow. The nonnative species knows how to fight or avoid its predators, and is good at reproducing. But for native species that evolved without worrying about the new predators, and are less fecund, it’s a big problem.

That’s what happened in the Channel Islands off California when pigs brought by humans attracted eagles that started preying on native foxes. The Canadian caribou tale is more indirect: Climate change, extensive wolf control in other areas and logging in British Columbian rain forests — which left decades worth of shrubby moose food in place of ancient trees — encouraged the moose to expand its territory. They traveled from their flat boreal forests homes to the rugged rain forests in southern British Columbia and Idaho where mountain caribou live. Wolves followed and started preying on the native caribou.

First Nations people in Canada who are native to the mountains where this study took place don’t even have a word for moose, said Dr. Serrouya. The animals may have never lived there. But today moose outnumber white-tailed deer (which are also invading) around 16 to one — and both outnumber mountain caribou.

To reduce moose numbers, the government of British Columbia increased hunting permits in 2003 by tenfold in a 2,500-square-mile area in the Columbia mountain range. The researchers compared what happened there with a nearby area to the west separated by mountains. It had a similar climate and ecology but no increased hunting. The scientists asked: Could sport hunting alone reduce the moose population to its historical level of few to none? Would that reduce wolves as well, relieving pressure on the mountain caribou? And would that help restore the caribou populations from near extinction to something sustainable?

Over ten years of monitoring the movements, survival and reproduction of the animals, the scientists found that extra moose hunting, even in this remote area, was enough to reduce the moose from around 1700 to just 300 or 400. It also reduced the wolves, which dispersed from the area and had fewer babies. The survival rate of the largest caribou subpopulation increased enough to stabilize in the hunting area, but continued to plummet in the area where hunting was not allowed to increase.

A similar approach was used in California to save those Channel Island foxes: killing feral pigs had an effect on the golden eagles that were hunting the foxes.

But moose control may not by itself be enough to save caribou in some circumstances. In one small group of caribou with fewer than 50 animals, the population did not stabilize. This suggested to Dr. Serrouya that without the social benefits of big group living (like extra eyes to watch for predators), the mountain caribou were vulnerable to additional pressures like random catastrophes, inadequate food or predation by cougars and bears. He thinks to truly restore mountain caribou populations, a more nuanced, multifaceted approach is necessary.

“It’s not up to me to decide what goes extinct or not,” said Dr. Serrouya. “But personally, if we can prevent extinction, and if we caused or are contributing to that, then sure — it’s a good thing to do.”

Empty-Handed Hunters Can Learn From Wolves – By Rick Lamplugh

LISTEN NOW!

I hear hunters say that we should kill more wolves because wolves take so many elk that hunters come up empty handed. Instead of killing wolves, I think that hunters can learn from them. Here’s how. (photo NPS) Rick Lamplugh writes to protect wildlife and preserve wildlands. His new book, Deep into Yellowstone: A Year’s Immersion in Grandeur and Controversy, is available signed from Rick at bit.ly/2tIEt62, or unsigned on Amazon: amzn.to/2tgPU3E. His best seller, In the Temple of Wolves, is available signed at bit.ly/1gYghB4, or unsigned on Amazon at amzn.to/Jpea9Q.