On Saturday, Danielle Solberg and her grandmother Barb, volunteered to do some pack observations to help interpret the current pack dynamics of the Exhibit Pack. These type of observations are valuable, as they help give a perspective that doesn't involve wolf care in the enclosure. Danielle did an excellent job taking notes and observed Maya doing some parallel gating with each of the males in the Exhibit, but more frequently with Aidan. In an effort to learn more about the pack dynamics (post Shadow retirement), we are resurrecting a program called Wolf Watch, which occurs on the first Thursday of every month. Check out the Programs tab on the wolf center home page, Wolf Watch programs are posted under the Seminar tab.

Extremely vigorous with food. Was stressed during pup program. Was constantly pacing along the pen and trying to find escape route. Was whining to get out. Did well during program; a little anxious but was able to be distracted with pine cone and deer hide. Howled with adult wolves after encouragement from staff.

Maya has been noticeably calmer in the last week, and while she continues to make every effort to get Denali to roll over, she has only succeeded in making Aidan submissive and Grizzer avoid her. Certainly the role of the dominant female plays a critical part in pack dynamics, and while she and Shadow had a strong bond, his weakening condition made life more difficult for Maya. What is interesting, is the Maya has spent very little time focused on the Retired Enclosure, but seems to be putting all of her focus on the future of the pack. The Center is re instituting a program called Wolf Watch. This program occurs the first Thursday of every month, and involves training program participants in data collection, and having the observers camp out in the auditorium for a night of observation. We hope to offer this program the first Thursday of every month, and be able to interpret the pack dynamics without the influence of wolf care staff interactions with the wolves.