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Year 3 (1972)
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Annual Cycle of the wolf

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Annual Cycle of the wolf

Post by Guest on Sat Sep 15, 2012 12:36 pm

This topic will help you to learn about the process wolves go through during the different seasons of the year.

Winter:
Within the winter, a wolf's fur coat is thick in order to keep them warm during the coldest nights, considering the fact that they practically have no body heat loss through their fur. During the night a wolf will curl up, covering it's nose with it's long tail. This specifically manages to hold warm air exhaled over the feet and nose, keeping them warm. Also, when a wolf inhales, the air is filtered through the tail and is warmed by the exhaled air before it's breathed in.

The wolf will feed a lot just before the winter season begins. Hunting is specifically difficult during the wnter, and the pack may suffer from inactivity and extra stores of fat will help them survive during these periods. When hunting within the winter wolves will try and conserve their energy whenever it is possible, by following the same trail as the prey, staying upwind, and staying out of the sight of the prey. If you wish to learn more about wolf hunts, please refer to this topic: http://www.seasonal-trackers.com/t845-the-science-before-a-hunt

Depending on the depth of the snow, wolves will choose the path that is the easiest to follow - the dominant(s) will form a single file line, the rest of the pack will follow, and the pups will be last. They typically wil follow old game trails, frozen lakes, or other paths that consist of less resistance.

Spring:
Within the spring, wolves will often run a around and play with each other due the excitement of the arrival of spring. Also, during this time wolves will devote it's time to digging or remodeling an existing den in order to prepare for the arrival of pups - the den becomes the focal point for the pack. If you want to learn more about wolf dens and pups, then please refer to these topics: http://www.seasonal-trackers.com/t1445-the-use-of-dens + http://www.seasonal-trackers.com/t1453-wolf-pup-guide

Summer:
For wolves, summer is the time for growth, their winter fur is gone and it is replaced by a short summer coat.

During this time wolf pups will still be using the den while the mother will again start hunting with the pact - the pups are never specifically left alone. This is a time for fun and play for the pups, the adults put up alot with the puppies. However, ar around eight weeks of age they will leave the den and move to a 'redezvous' site. These type of sites are usually located near where the pack is hunting.

During the summer, most of the activity for wolves will take place at night, in order to avoid the heat during the day. Wolves will follow gravel bars and river beds, and they will also kee to the high ridges in order to get a good view of possible prey.

The way wolves hunt is similar to the way they hunt during the winter, however, they are not hampered by the winter elements. If you want to understand more about wolf hunts, then please refer to the link presented in the section 'winter'.

Autumn:
This is the season where wolves will begin their preparation for the winter. Their fur coat will become deep and dense. Wolf pups during this period are aware of snow instinctively, however their first experience with snow is a exuberant experience.

The pups will have also been on hunts with the pack, however, they still have much to learn. At this time young wolves are typically around 50 pounds, and will not reach full size for months to come. Plus, the pack will migrate along with their prey, as they must stay as close to their prey species as possible. This season is also a time for natural dispersal for most animal - some wolves may leave during this season to find a partner and create their own pack.

Source of information: http://www.wolfcountry.net/information/WolfCycle.html

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