FunNature & AnimalThe Canadian wolf, one of North America's top predators

The Canadian wolf, one of North America's top predators

There are a total of three wolf families in the world: the gray wolf, the Abyssinian wolf and the red wolf. The first, the gray wolf, is considered to be one of the largest. And it is here that we meet the Canadian wolf , which is a subspecies of the gray wolf. It weighs about 60 kg, and measures about 80 centimeters.

It is also commonly known by other names, such as the Alberta wolf, the Mackenzie Valley wolf, or the Canadian wolf and the Alaskan wolf . Although its scientific name is Canis lupus occidentalis .

It would be a species that, at the moment, would be unprotected , so it can be hunted, except during the period in which the herd is responsible for raising the cubs. In fact, it is often highly valued for its fur .

Until now, it is estimated that there are between 50,000 and 60,000 individuals, which is why it is classified as “least concern”.

As its name suggests, the Canadian wolf lives in Canada, including Quebec, and also in Alaska. All this thanks to the fact that it has perfectly adapted to its environment .

It was Sir John Richardson, a naturalist of Scottish origin, who in 1829 described this subspecies for the first time. At the time, he explained that it had “a more robust build than the common gray wolf, with a larger, rounder head and a thicker, more obtuse snout.”

In addition, he pointed out that “his ears are also shorter and his fur is thicker”, in addition to having thicker and longer legs, which are perfect for walking through deep snow or through the rugged terrain of the well-known Rocky Mountains.

Interestingly, the color of his fur varies depending on where he lives . For example, when it lives further north, with an absence of rare vegetation, it tends to have a lighter coat, which allows it to blend in better with the landscape. However, if he usually lives in an area with dense vegetation, his fur will be darker.

Like many wolves, the Canadian wolf has a good sense of smell , which stands out for being highly developed. In fact, the occasional study has revealed that it is capable of perceiving an odor at a distance of about 300 meters .

According to this study, when the Canadian wolf detects prey, it stops and its nose points in the direction where it is. In addition, in the presence of this signal, all the others raise their heads in order to analyze the smell.

The herd then begins to wag their tails and jump, then fall silent.

Another study, of Canadian origin, also points out that the presence of these wolves is essential when it comes to avoiding damage caused by deer . And it is that, in the absence of predators, “90 percent of the undergrowth vegetation disappeared. This caused the disappearance or severe scarcity of many invertebrates, including pollinating insects, and, later, birds.

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