This has been a busy week for the wolf care staff with the ethology class, hence the delay in updating the wolf logs. Lucas, with the help of daily brushing from the wolf care staff, has almost shed his undercoat. This is important with the arrival of warmer weather temperatures. Summer weather also means more black flies and fly ointment treatment for the wolves in order to protect their ears and legs from the fly bites. Lucas often seeks the shelter of his den box during the day, but will sometimes come out to greet wolf care staff at the fence or to drink at the small pond.

One of the most distinctive characteristics of Lucas are his greenish eyes. It is common for wolves to have the yellow eyes and some may have green-yellow ones. Eventhough Lucas is 12 years old. He is a powerful wolf. When a group of veterinarians from Europe visited the center. Lucas performed his usual walk infront of the fence carrying a beaver head. We don't know if he enjoys that, but he sure does it every time new people is on site!

With the arrival of the deer and the extra feeding, the pack was rather full for the week, but since Fall is in full gear, I think the extra calories will be used. There certainly seems to be adequate play behavior between the pups that can account for some caloric loss. Even with the three deer torso (legs of deer are removed and saved for smaller feedings) week on Sunday, Wednesday and Saturday, the pups still voraciously consumed the 5 lbs. of meat fed on Monday, Thursday and Friday nights.

Lucas had a great visit with wolf care staff member, Laurie Feela. He spent most of the wolf check with her, and showed none of the reluctant behavior that was present earlier this winter. This could be hormonally influenced, as spring brings a decrease in testosterone creating a calmer, more associative individual.

Written by Pups at One Year program participant: Patty & Kate Kierski This week Lucas did something interesting during feeding. All the retired wolves were given deer legs. Lucas got a front leg, which has less meat than a back leg. Lucas backed away from his leg and then Lakota ran over to his. Luca went over to Lakota's leg, which was a back leg, which also meant more food for him.

Jen Westlund noted: " Good interactions between wolves and staff, LS noticed two small scars (resembling the spacing of 8 month old pup canines), the scars are healing well. Lucas and Shadow had alot of interactions, with Lucas grooming Shadow and Shadow remaining very submissive and still. Lakota seems skittish, but still had good contact with staff and had was observed to have no further injuries.

Another question that is on the mind of wolf care staff is "When will the pups no longer able to feed first on a carcass"? At this time, if the pups are able to get to the carcass before the adults, they will be allowed to feed with relatively few challenges, except from Lakota, who doesn't generally show the same attitude toward the pups as Lucas and Mackenzie. Staff will be monitoring this closely to note if this behavior changes and what circumstances may have contributed to the change.

Lucas is doing well. He turned 12 on the 28th of April, and actually got to eat before Lakota since we fed Beaver (each wolf had a beaver). Lakota decided to snooze on her Beaver before eating it, Lucas decided to take advantage of the fact that he didn't have to share, and had a good meal. Today, Lucas was observed chasing Ravens for most of the day.

The Wildlife Science Center graciously donated some excess roadkill deer to the Center on Saturday October 7th. Vermilion Community College volunteers Damon Haan and Craig Merriman drove to the cities and picked up the deer. On Sunday October 8th, Vermilion Student, Jason Ziburski assisted the Wolf Curator with gutting the carcasses and storing the remains in the 2 chest freezers at the Center. They put 9 of the 14 deer in the freezer, one deer was fed to the pack even though there was a Saturday night "What's for Dinner" program, two deer were hung from a two-by four in the shaded area on the North side of the building for the 10/11 and 10/16 feeding. The two remaining deer were taken to a remote location east of Ely for local wildlife to scavenge.

Aggressive dominance of Shadow by Lucas and Mackenzie. Shadow biting Mackenzie's rump several quick attempts. Pups and Lucas then chased Lakota who seemed to be confined to the den area. Mackenzie then received good attention from the staff.