Friday, January 21, 2011

Weird week in wolf news

Posted By on Fri, Jan 21, 2011 at 2:30 PM

Wolves always make news in these parts, and for good reason. Just this week, there was the gaggle of Stevi landowners perturbed over wolves allegedly forcing elk herds into their pastures and hay fields. There was also a report that wolves are to blame for low elk numbers in Yellowstone. And then there was the Montana House voting 99-1 in favor of a resolution to remove the gray wolf from the endangered species list.

But those local stories don't raise eyebrows quite as high as two international wolf stories also out this week.

Just consider the Guardian's profile of Shaun Ellis, a Brit who, inspired by Idaho naturalist and Nez Perce tribal member Levi Holt, decided to live with the same wolf pack in the wild for over a year.

I was only ever truly scared on two occasions: once, when all the wolves were feeding, I ate the wrong piece of meat — there is a strict hierarchy of who eats what part of an animal — and one of the wolves leapt on me in seconds because of my mistake. He took my entire face in his mouth and started to squeeze hard. I could feel the bones in my jaw begin to bend, and in that split-second I realised how vulnerable I was and how restrained they were most of the time.

Then there's the report of a Norwegian boy who avoided a confrontation with four wolves on his way home by ... blasting Creed. According to Der Spiegel, and later reported by tech blog Gizmodo, the teenager first thought he'd run across some neighborhood dogs. When he realized they were wolves, he pulled the ear buds out of his smart phone and, naturally, turned up some cheesy heavy metal.

Eikrem said he was able to drive away the wolves by playing the song "Overcome" by the American hard-rock band Creed. "They didn't really get scared," Walter said. "They just turned around and simply trotted away."

The lesson here, apparently, is that Stevi landowners should really consider broadcasting more of this:

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