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Wild Wolf Pack Roams Freely in Denmark for the First Time After 200 Years

May 06, 2017 09:18 AM EDT
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After 200 years, a wolf pack is once again roaming wild in Denmark. There had been no verified wild wolf sighting in Denmark since 1812 until a male wolf (grey wolf) was spotted in the Jutland peninsula north of Germany in 2012.

Wolves are known to roam in groups, so the scientists in Denmark started to look for more members of the pack. Since 2012, they have spotted a total of five different wolves in the County, one of which is a she-wolf.

According to Copenhagen Post, DNA from two feces samples confirmed that a she-wolf has indeed settled in the West of Jutland. In addition, a footage also showed the she-wolf roaming together with another wolf, implying that the she-wolf has found her mate. This could mean that by now, wolf cubs are also in the area or that wolf cubs will be in the area anytime soon.

"We expect that they will have cubs this year or the next," Peter Sunde, a senior researchers at the Department of Bioscience at Aarhus University said in a statement. "Even if this pair doesn't have cubs, we must assume that new females will come. It's expected that more wolf pairs will establish themselves in Jutland within the next five years."

As translated by BBC, Berlingske newspaper reported that the she-wolf originally came from Germany before traveling more than 500 kilometers to the Denmark territory. The scientists estimate that there are atleast 40 wolves in Denmark at present. However, they are not disclosing their exact location as people might panic.

Since the wolf sighting in 2012, there have been many reports claiming that a number of sheep and deer in Jutland have been attacked by wolves, prompting Danish famers to be worried about their livelihood and safety. However, Sunde asserted that as long as people do not disturb the wolves, both the human population and wolf pack can live in harmony.

Speaking to The Guardian he explained, "There is a tradition in Denmark of reaching compromises and reaching solutions. Technically, we can relatively easily manage the wolf population but the challenge is the psychology of humans. There are so many feelings and opinions about wolves in Denmark, as everywhere. The wolf debate is very much value-driven rather than related to concrete problems."

As per  IUCN, originally, the grey wolf was the world's most widely distributed mammal. It has become extinct in much of the world and their present distribution is more limited now. Their population has been reduced by about one-third, primarily because of poisoning and deliberate persecution due to depredation on livestock.

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