Four Maned Wolf Pups For The Smithsonian!


Although 2012 has only just begun, the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia (SCBI-FR), already has something to celebrate in the new year: the birth of four Maned Wolf pups Jan. 5. It is the first litter born at SCBI-FR in two years and will play an important role in helping researchers maintain a viable, self-sustaining population under human care.

“Every pup born here helps us understand more about the biology of this incredible species,” said Nucharin Songsasen, an SCBI research biologist. “SCBI has a long history with the Maned Wolf, both in terms of studying the biology and maintaining the genetic diversity of individuals living under human care, as well as in conserving the animals in the wild.”



Photo credit: Lisa Ware, Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute

The four pups were born to mother, 8-year-old Salina, and father, 4-year-old Nopal, who was born at SCBI-FR. Maned Wolf pups have a 50 percent mortality rate in the first month, so keepers are monitoring them closely. This litter is particularly valuable because Nopal is the 10th most genetically valuable male among the 36 reproductively viable males in the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Maned Wolf Species Survival Plan, which matches animals across the country to ensure genetic diversity in the population. Seventy-two maned wolf pups have been born at SCBI-FR since 1975, and the facility currently has 12 wolves, including the pups. The National Zoo has two maned wolves on exhibit at the Cheetah Conservation Station.

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Meet Dora and Diego the Maned Wolf Pups!

Dora and Diego, Maned Wolf puppies at the Houston Zoo

The Houston Zoo is proud to announce the births of two rare Maned Wolf pups. Born December 30, the pups are being hand reared at the Houston Zoo's Denton Cooley Animal Hospital. "This is the first successful birth of Maned Wolves at the Houston Zoo in over 10 years," said Houston Zoo Curator of Carnivores and Primates Hollie Colahan. "The pups weigh just over 5 pounds now and are being cared for around the clock by Zoo carnivore and animal hospital staff," added Colahan. The pups are fed 6 times each day and were just introduced to solid food last week. Maned Wolves are not closely related with any other living Canid (wolf, dog or fox) and one study suggests that they may be the sole South American surivivor of the mass extinction of large Canids at the end of the last ice age. 

Diego's weigh-in

Diego does his best puppy dog eyes at the Houston Zoo

Maned Wolves are native to the grasslands, savannahs and tall grass prairies of Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Bolivia. The species once thrived and ranged throughout much of South America.Unlike other wolves that live in cooperative breeding packs, Maned Wolves are solitary animals. Little is known about their lives in the wild where their populations are increasingly threatened by habitat loss to agriculture.

MUCH more cuteness below the fold...

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Polar Wolf Mother Spotted Nuzzling with Pups

Yesterday, zoo visitor Ulli J. snapped these pictures of a mother Arctic Wolf, also known as a Polar Wolf tending to her young. The Monde Sauvage Safari Park in Belgium is home to these North American natives. In the wild, Polar Wolf mothers leave the pack when they are pregnant to seek safe refuge for their cubs. It is not uncommon for her siblings to help care for these young while she finds food outside the den.





Photo Credits: Ulli J.

Endangered Red Wolf Pups Return to the Wild!

Two of six endangered red wolf pups born at Lincoln Park Zoo on April 17 are on their way to North Carolina today where they will be released into the wild through the Red Wolf Recovery Program. The newborn pups will be placed inside the den of a pair of wild adult wolves that are currently nursing their own small litter of comparably aged pups. The wild wolves will become the zoo-born pups’ foster parents.




Photo Credits: Lincoln Park Zoo

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More Maned Wolf Cubs at Denver Zoo!

Three rare maned wolf pups have begun exploring outside of their hut over the last few days at the Denver Zoo.  Cayenne, a female, and Santiago and Diego, both males, were born on Christmas Eve to mother, Itati, and father, Tega. The pups have remained close to mom but are becoming more curious daily. All three pups were just given a clean bill of health by  doctors. Denver Zoo visitors can see the pups as they explore at the zoo’s Feline Building just east of the main entrance.




Photo Credit Dave Parsons / Denver Zoo

See their medical exam below the fold...

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Denver Zoo Maned Wolf Pups

Meet three curious and playful little Maned Wolf pups who have just begun to explore their exhibit at the Denver Zoo. Born Dec. 24th, this is the first time the wolves have been seen by the public.

Maned wolf pup denver zoo

Sometimes called a "Red Fox on stilts" the Maned Wolf is actually not closely related to any other living wolf or fox. It is believed to be the last remaining species of a much older canine lineage. Recent research suggests its closest relative might have been the now extinct Falkland Islands Wolf. 

Shy Maned Wolf Pups at Paignton Zoo

The UK's Paignton Zoo recently welcomed three little Maned Wolf pups to mother wolf Maya and father Smolis. Shy and elusive, Maned Wolves are hard to see in the wild and are often bashful in captivity as well. South America's largest wolf, this species lives in monogamous pairs rather than in packs like other wolf species.

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Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 2 rs

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 3 rs

Maned wolf pup paignton zoo 3 rs2Photo credits: Ray Wiltshire

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Zurich Zoo's Wolf Pups

Outstanding photographer Tambako the Jaguar captured pictures of Zoo Zurich's new wolf cubs earlier this summer. The Grey Wolf and its subspecies once ranged over most of North America, Europe and Asia but have been pushed to the northern boundaries of most of these continents by habitat destruction and eradication efforts. These wolves share a common ancestry with domestic dogs, although how you get from here to a chihuahua is something we would love to see time lapse photography of.

Wolf pup zurich zoo tambako 1 rs

Wolf pup zurich zoo tambako 2

Wolf pup zurich zoo tambako 3 rs  

Lincoln Park Zoo Releases Endangered Wolf Pups

This critically endangered wolf, and three of her litter mates will be released to the wild in North Carolina later today where they will are to be fostered by a pair of wild adult wolves as part of the Red Wolf Recovery Program. The pups were born at the Lincoln Park Zoo as part of the Red Wolf Recovery Program and this reintroduction method has been successfully performed with multiple litters over the past ten years.




These are first wolf pups born at Lincoln Park Zoo to be released in the wild.

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Mischievous Maned Wolf Cubs

The Edinburgh Zoo in Scotland welcomed four Maned Wolf cubs in March which are just now starting to venture out of the den. The first two pictures were taken more recently and the second two show the tiny cubs in their den, albeit a bit unclearly. Thanks to Lesley4444 for sharing.

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Maned wolf pup in den 1 ab

Maned wolf pup in den 2 ab

Although often called a "red fox on stilts," the Maned Wolf is not closely related to any other living canid (dogs and wolves, foxes, and related species). Their long legs help them see over tall grasses in their native South America. 

Mom in all her long-legged glory.
Maned wolf ab