Wolves & Coyotes

A Coyote or a Wolf? How do you tell the difference? ... and some concerns about wolf hunting with hounds

Wolves Most people are cognizant that coyotes live in Ontario, especially in the central region. Often these smaller cousins of the gray wolf (Canis lupus) are mistakenly identified as gray wolves by the untrained eye. This can lead to confusion amongst people regarding what exactly they have spotted; is it a coyote or a wolf?

As a result, because there are generally more coyotes than wolves around, some people are led to believe that a given area is being over-run with gray wolves when in fact this is not the case. Coyotes are normally present in higher populations and therefore people are likely to see them more often than pure blood wolves.

The special enclosure provided a rare view of a mother and young wolf pup

This is an excerpt from a special three part article that Bill Leeming wrote after visiting with a wild captive wolf pack in the upper peninsula of Michigan, U.S.A..

It was Friday evening, May 24th and unusually cold for being so late in the month.  The sun was beginning to set when I began to howl. I howled three times, with each attempt lasting about 12 to 15 seconds.  These were met with silence except for the odd raven cawing somewhere in the distance. I was directing my howls towards a massive, heavily wooded and high-fenced enclosure, of about 30 acres in size. From somewhere inside this area I was sure I was being watched by several pairs of eyes. I was peering into the forest home of a wild pack of captive timber wolves.  I was about to try again when I suddenly heard and counted four distinctly different howls. As a result, I knew that all but one of the adults was answering.

The Eyes of a Wolf

firefox-grayWhen visitors to our home were introduced to our wolf/dog hybrid, there were normally two things that they would comment on when meeting him for the first time.   Usually people were struck by the unusual colour of his coat, which was a bristly combination of tawny brown, dark brown and grey guard hairs.  The second most popular feature commented on were his eyes, which were a yellow-amber colour and quite striking, even from a distance.

Wild Animals, Especially Large Ones, Make Painful Pets for Untrained Owners

I think the time has come for me to set the record straight on how I feel about just anyone keeping a wolf or a wolf hybrid as a pet.

I've asked this before and I'll ask it again: why do people insist on keeping large, semi-domesticated wild animals as pets? Especially, as I've already mentioned, wolves or wolf hybrids.

I'm often astounded that people expect these animals to behave like cuddly house pets.


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