Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Wolf! Wolf!

On Bank Holiday Monday we went to the Open Day at the UK Wolf Conservancy Trust. I didn't realise this place was so local until I saw the advert for the open day.

There are no wild wolves in the UK, the last one was killed in the 1700s in Scotland. There have been none in England since the 1400s though there have been campaigns to reintroduce them to the wild in more remote areas. The Trust serves to educate people about wolves and wolf behaviour and to support projects around the world that protect wolves.

One of the European Grey Wolves - they have two at the Trust - Lunca & Latea

This is Duma, their only remaining North American Wolf, her sister Dakota died this year so she is feeling a little lonely, however it's not possible to introduce another adult wolf to her enclosure. To make up for her lack of company she was moved to the enclosure next to Lunca & Latea so she can interact with them and she has been getting more attention from the staff and handlers including more enrichment walks.

There were some other animals brought in for the open day including this handsome Bearded Dragon. There were some snakes (a rat snake, a corn snake and a python), some tree frogs, toads, a tarantula and other creepy crawlies. These are all part of an educational experience that tours schools and other places.

A well hidden stick insect

One of the Canadian wolves, either Mosi or Mai. Both are girls, their alpha male Torak was hiding most of the afternoon.

Everybody had a go at archery (except me because of my shoulder)

There were also some raptors on show including this handsome Red Kite. As red kites fly over here quite often, there is a local pair that I see most weeks, I was thrilled to be able to get this close to one of these magnificent birds. From near extinction they are now doing really well with 600 breeding pairs in the Thames Valley, 1600 in the country.

The end to a fabulous weekend!

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