African Grey Wolves
These wolves (Canis lupus lupaster) are now thought to roam in several countries in Africa, including Mali, Senegal, Algeria, Ethiopia and northern Egypt. Further research is required to determine how these animals evolved and further explain their relationship with jackals. These wolves have large ears and narrow bodies, looking more like jackals than wolves, which prompted the initial confusion. The population size is unknown, and without legal protection, wolves are often killed in defence of livestock.
This rare species (Canis simensis) is related to golden jackals, grey wolves and coyotes. Ethiopian wolves hunt alone but like grey wolves, they breed cooperatively and are part of a strong social hierarchy within their family pack. Ethiopian wolves eat smaller prey than grey wolves, and this is reflected in their size (less than 40 lbs). Their habitat is restricted to high-elevation grasslands, and although the species is fully protected, the population is likely decreasing due to rabies. Annual monitoring efforts began in 2011, and the population is estimated to be less than 500 animals. To learn more about Ethiopian wolves, click here.
African wolf research and news:
August 10, 2012
Reviving the African Wolf Canis lupus lupaster in North and West Africa: A Mitochondrial Lineage Ranging More than 6,000 km Wide