Take a walk on the wild side to find our canids, or canines. Get up close and personal with our gray wolves. Spot a red fox, master of camouflage.
You might even catch a howl or two.
WHAT: Despite the name, the gray wolf’s coat can range from almost pure white to black. WHERE: Forest and tundra, wilderness in Northern U.S. and Alaska, Europe and Asia. SIZE: Length 4.5-6.5 ft.; height 32-34 in.; weight 75-110 lbs. EATS: Large and small mammals. BABIES: Breeding from January-April. After a 2-month pregnancy, the female gives birth to a litter of 2-11 pups weighing about 1 pound. STATUS: Endangered. FUN FACTS: Wolves live and hunt in a pack that is structured socially in class layers, with an alpha male and female at the top. The alpha female is the only one to give birth.
Wolves communicate visually in sophisticated ways, using body posture, facial expressions and tail positions. Audible communication is the howl, which bonds the pack, helps them reassemble and is sometimes just for play.
Wolves are naturally wary of humans and prefer to flee or avoid them if possible
WHAT: Red foxes look like a small dog, with a reddish-yellow coat, bushy white-tipped tails. They can also be black, silver or a red-silver cross. WHERE: Forest and open country throughout northern hemisphere. SIZE: Length 22-25 in.; height 13-35 in.; weight 10-15 lbs. EATS: Insects to small mammals, also berries and other plants. BABIES: After a 63-day pregnancy the female gives birth to pups in March or April. STATUS: Secure. FUN FACTS: Foxes usually hunt alone for small prey.
Like other canids, foxes communicate through sounds as well as scent-markings. Their vocalizations range from aggressive yapping and howls (young males) to soft whimpers and barks (vixens and pups).
Pups are usually born in burrows or rock dens, and remain there for about a month after they are born.
Inflammatory bowel disease is no fun. Diarrhea, vomiting, unpleasant gut sensations, even pain or fever. But if you’re an American red wolf, there are worse implications: That inflammation in your intestines might cause you to lose weight, get stressed and maybe even fail to reproduce. For an endangered species with less than 300 like you left on the planet, that’s a big worry. That’s exactly why Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium veterinarians have been investigating IBD in red wolves. Head veterinarian Dr. Karen Wolf first discovered that red wolves do, in fact, develop the disease, just like people and pets. …
Once upon a time there were two wolf species: red wolves and gray wolves. Neither of them were “big and bad,” but they were often feared by humans. Over time, more and more were hunted. By 1940 gray wolves were decimated in the American wild and by the 1970s, so were red wolves. It was time for the story’s hero to step in. “Humans have a long history of blaming predators for problems, like wolves and grizzly bears,” says Marc Heinzman, zoological curator at Northwest Trek. “But scientific data shows that’s just not true in all cases.” While it’s true …
I had my howls all ready to go. When Northwest Trek keepers agreed I could try playing some music to our gray wolves, I was stoked. I’m primarily a writer in our marketing department – I run our websites and write blog stories, emails and more. But I’m also a classically-trained musician and have, in the last few years, developed a unique voice improvising on double bass using a looping pedal to create my own harmonies. I especially love taking this music outside, incorporating natural sounds like whalesong and birdsong. Playing music for actual wolves took this to a whole …