Section 1. 4 – What is the value of wolves? Before the arrival of European settlers in the West, the wolf was not at risk. During the bison hunt, the wolf was threatened. After ranchers arrived, the wolf became endangered. By 1996, the wolf had been extirpated from the Yellowstone National Park area. They were subsequently reintroduced.
Human Impact • First Nations people believed that wolves were their “brothers.” They thought of wolves as resourceful, brave, and spiritual animals – they respected wolves. They also recognized that animals should not be killed for selfish reasons (e.g., killing buffalo only for their hides. )
An Ecosystem Out of Balance • The removal of the wolf led to increased prey populations of their food plants. Scavengers that eat the remains of wolf-kill carcasses are reduced or eliminated from the ecosystem. Coyotes become the top carnivores and increase in numbers, causing the populations of small animals such as mice, voles, ground squirrels, and ground-nesting birds to decrease.
Wolves Today • In Ontario, the wolf has been extirpated in the south and is still hunted in the north. As in the Prairies, Ontario’s populations of coyotes and red foxes have increased rapidly. These animals have adapted to urban and suburban life.
Assignment - • Complete questions on page 17 -1,2 and 3. • This must be handed in tomorrow.