Wolf attacks on humans

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Predatory attack on a child, as depicted on a 1914 issue of Le Petit Journal.

Wolf attacks on humans have been studied by historians and biologists. In modern times, along with wolves themselves, wolf attacks have become rare, but still do occur, most frequently in south-central Asia, where thousands have been recorded. France has more extensive historical records than many other countries, with 3,272 documented attacks from 1580–1830. They are much less common in North America than Eurasia. For example, in the half-century up to 2002, there were eight fatal attacks in Europe and Russia, none in North America, and more than 200 in South Asia.[1]

Because attacks are unusual and sometimes poorly documented, wolves' danger to humans is debated. Most wolf attacks are probably non-fatal and due to rabies. Others, mainly on children, involve wolves acting either defensively, out of curiosity, or targeting humans as prey.[2][3] The rarity of incidents is sometimes attributed to sparse human population in most wolf habitat. Another factor may be that wolves have been "taught to fear humans."[4] For example, one writer believes wolves are generally not dangerous if wolves are in "low numbers," have sufficient food, little contact with humans, and are occasionally hunted.[5]

Wolves and wolf-human interactions[edit]

Wolves are the largest wild member of the canid family, with males averaging 43–45 kg (95–99 lb), and females 36–38.5 kg (79–85 lb).[6] It is the most specialized member of its genus in the direction of carnivory and hunting large game.[7] Although they primarily target ungulates, wolves are at times versatile in their diet; for example, those in the Mediterranean region largely subsist on garbage and domestic animals.[8]

Possessing remarkably powerful jaws, wolves are easily capable of killing humans.[9] However, wolves vary in their reaction to humans. Those with little prior experience with humans, and those positively conditioned through feeding, may lack fear. Wolves living in open areas, for example the North American Great Plains, historically showed little fear before the advent of firearms in the 19th Century,[10] and would follow hunters to feed on the kills of human hunters, particularly bison.[11] In contrast, forest-dwelling wolves in North America were noted for shyness.[10] Wolf biologist L. David Mech hypothesized in 1998 that wolves generally avoid humans because of fear instilled by hunting.[12] Mech also noted that humans' upright posture is unlike wolves' other prey, and similar to some postures of bears, which wolves usually avoid.[9] Mech speculated that attacks are preceded by habituation to humans, while a successful outcome for the wolf may lead to repeated behavior, as documented especially in India.[12]

Quality of data and debate[edit]

Public perception of the risk, frequency and occurrence of attacks on people by wolves has varied dramatically over time and with location. This has ranged from a narrative of "there has never been a documented case of a healthy wild wolf attacking a human in North America" to considering the risk of such attacks to be very high. Sources have attributed the variations in perception to various causes including actual variation in the frequency of attacks over time and geography, impressions left by books, movies and the media, and variations in the quality of data.

In 2002, a group of Norwegian scientists said conflict existed between "lay knowledge and scientific knowledge" regarding danger posed by wolves. Most available data "come from times and places where modern forensic methods and standards of checking data do not exist," according to this Norwegian group. These Norwegians broke their data into three categories: 1) scientific, 2) historical documents, and 3) other "non-technical literature" including newspapers. Within these, it identified nine generic sources of potential error; including attack versus scavenging, problems with oral tradition, euphemisms and superstition, and mistaken identity. A "degree of uncertainty exists" in nearly all of the hundreds of reports included in its summary, the Norwegian group said.

Scientists worldwide at times debate the degree of rarity with which wolves attack humans. In part this is due to the often poor documentation of rare events in locations that were geographically and historically remote. For example, a 1944 work compiled by Stanley P. Young & Edward A. Goldman, reviewed accounts of 30 North American attacks occurring before 1900, including six that may have been fatal. "Whether these reports are the product of a fertile imagination or are truth is difficult to determine," Young wrote in a preface.[13]

Perhaps similarly, L. David Mech, an influential wolf biologist in the early 1990s, wrote of receiving “20 to 30 reports" of fatal attacks annually from India, but noted that none were "investigated by competent biologists." Six years later in a follow-up, Mech wrote that many such attacks had subsequently been confirmed. In the same 1998 essay, Mech wrote that wolf advocates—including himself—may have been guilty of hyperbole in using the phrase “there has never been a documented case of a healthy wild wolf attacking a human in North America.” Separately, biologist Diane K. Boyd complained that such hyperbole may have helped form unrealistic public expectations regarding wolves, and risked creating an eventual backlash against conservation efforts.

In an earlier and separate matter, Canadian biologist C. Douglas Clarke concluded that historical attacks in Europe were mostly a result of rabies. Clarke further suggested that a series of 18th Century attacks in France were by wolf-dog hybrids. At least one contemporary writer who disagreed with Clark, said Clarke’s speculations had been unduly influential among North American biologists. Along with Clarke's theories, other unproven hypotheses were offered to explain why reports of attacks had been relatively more common in Eurasia than North America. Some, notably Mech, said that regardless of theories, North America presented a unique circumstance according to available records.

Apart from scientific debates, a number of writers also believed that the 1963 book "Never Cry Wolf," was unduly influential on public opinion. The work was by Farley Mowat, a popular Canadian author, several of whose nonfiction books contained inaccuracies, according to several critics. A commercially successful film based on Mowat's "Wolf" appeared in 1983.

Non-scientific debate regarding wolves is also centered around narrowly focused partisan groups representing hunting and livestock interests at one extreme, and animal rights groups at the other. Discussion contrasts with a consensus that lions, tigers, bears, dogs, leopards, and cougars can pose a threat.[14]

Characteristics of wolf attacks[edit]

Rabid[edit]

Cases of rabid wolves are low when compared to other species, as wolves do not serve as primary reservoirs of the disease, but can be infected with rabies from other animals such as dogs, jackals and foxes. Cases of rabies in wolves are very rare in North America, though numerous in the eastern Mediterranean, Middle East and Central Asia. The reason for this is unclear, though it may be connected with the presence of jackals in those areas, as jackals have been identified as primary carriers. Wolves apparently develop the "furious" phase of rabies to a very high degree, which, coupled with their size and strength, makes rabid wolves perhaps the most dangerous of rabid animals,[15] with bites from rabid wolves being 15 times more dangerous than those of rabid dogs.[16] Rabid wolves usually act alone, traveling large distances and often biting large numbers of people and domestic animals. Most rabid wolf attacks occur in the spring and autumn periods. Unlike with predatory attacks, the victims of rabid wolves are not eaten, and the attacks generally only occur on a single day.[17] Also, rabid wolves attack their victims at random, showing none of the selectivity displayed by predatory wolves, though the majority of recorded cases involve adult men, as men were frequently employed in agricultural and forestry activities which put them into contact with wolves.[18]

Non-rabid[edit]

Petits paysans surpris par un loup (1833), François Grenier de Saint-Martin.

Although wolves may react aggressively under provocation, such attacks are mostly limited to quick bites on extremities, and the attacks are not pressed. Cases are known in North America of fearless wolves approaching people and biting them, though these appear to have been attacks motivated by curiosity over people as potential prey. As with defensive attacks, investigative attacks are not pressed, and the animal is easily driven off.[3] In contrast, during actual predatory attacks (attacks by wolves treating humans as food) the victims are repeatedly bitten on the head and face, and are then dragged off and consumed, sometimes as far away as 1-2.5 km from the attack site, unless the wolf or wolves are driven off.[3][19] Such attacks typically occur only locally, and generally do not stop until the wolves involved are eliminated.[3] Predatory and investigative attacks may be preceded by a long period of habituation, in which wolves gradually lose their fear of humans. This was apparent in cases involving habituated North American wolves in Algonquin Provincial Park, Vargas Island and Ice Bay, as well as 19th century cases involving escaped captive wolves in Sweden and Estonia.[4][20] Predatory attacks can occur at any time of the year, with a peak in the June–August period, when the chances of people entering forested areas (for livestock grazing or berry and mushroom picking) increase,[2][18] though cases of non-rabid wolf attacks in winter have been recorded in Belarus, the Kirovsk and Irkutsk districts, Karelia and Ukraine.[21] Also, wolves with pups experience greater food stresses during this period.[18]

A worldwide 2002 study by the Norwegian Institute of Nature Research showed that 90% of victims of predatory attacks were children under the age of 18, especially under the age of 10. In the rare cases where adults were killed, the victims were almost always women. This is consistent with wolf hunting strategies, wherein the weakest and most vulnerable categories of prey are targeted.[18] Aside from their physical inferiority, children were historically more vulnerable to wolves as they were more likely to enter forests unattended to pick berries and mushrooms, as well as tend and watch over cattle and sheep on pastures.[2][22][23] While these practices have largely died out in Europe, they are still the case in India, where numerous attacks have been recorded in recent decades.[22] Further reason for the vulnerability of children is the fact that some may mistake wolves for dogs and thus approach them.[23]

History and perception of wolf attacks worldwide[edit]

Europe[edit]

Map showing the number of wolf attacks in France by département from 1400 to 1918.
Map of Eurasia showing the distribution of wolf attacks, with blue indicating areas where both rabid and predatory attacks occurred, purple for purely predatory attacks and green for purely rabid ones.
Chart showing the hypothetical stages leading up to wolf attacks on humans in 15th-19th century Italy.[24] While these factors are now largely absent in modern-day Europe, they are still present in rural India, where many attacks took place during the late 20th century.[22]

In France, historical records compiled by rural historian Jean-Marc Moriceau indicate that during the period 1580–1830, 3,272 people were killed by wolves, of whom 1,961 were killed by non-rabid wolves.[25] Numerous attacks occurred in Germany during the 17th century after the thirty years war, though the majority probably involved rabid wolves.[26] Although Italy has no records of wolf attacks after WWII and the eradication of rabies in the 1960s,[26] historians examining church and administrative records from northern Italy's central Po Valley region (which includes a part of modern day Switzerland) found 440 cases of wolves attacking people between the 15th and 19th centuries. The 19th century records show that between 1801-1825, there were 112 attacks, 77 of which resulted in death. Of these cases, only five were attributed to rabid animals.[24] In Latvia, records of rabid wolf attacks go back two centuries. At least 72 people were bitten between 1992-2000. Similarly, in Lithuania, attacks by rabid wolves have continued to the present day, with 22 people having been bitten between 1989-2001.[27] Around 82 people were bitten by rabid wolves in Estonia during the 18th to 19th centuries, with a further 136 people being killed in the same period by non-rabid wolves, though it is likely that the animals involved in the latter cases were a combination of wolf-dog hybrids and escaped captive wolves.[28]

Russia and the Soviet Union[edit]

The zoologist Petr Aleksandrovich Manteifel as of the 1940s regarded wolf attacks as either fiction or the result of rabies—a view widely accepted by Russian zoologists of the era. Manteifel changed his opinion while heading a commission after WWII investigating wolf attacks, which had increased during the war years. His November 1947 report described numerous attacks, including ones perpetrated by apparently healthy animals, and gave recommendations on how to better defend against them.

All the above is according to the American linguist Will Graves, who wrote a book on wolf attacks in Russia, and says that Soviet authorities censored Manteifel's 1947 document.[29] Based on this, Graves' editor, a retired Canadian ungulate biologist, added, in his essay titled "Let's get real," that all mention of wolf attacks was subsequently censored in the Soviet Union.[30] However, M. Bibikov of the Russian Academy of Sciences, claimed in 1993 that during the Soviet era, the Ministry of Agriculture sponsored "a lot of incorrect reports and speculation about the harmful role of wolves" that appeared in Russian hunting magazines and popular books of the era. Bibikov added that debate in Russia on the roles of wolves had been long and speculative and that Soviets accomplished little scientific research on the topic.[31]

Asia[edit]

In Iran, 98 attacks were recorded in 1981,[19] and 329 people were given treatment for rabid wolf bites in 1996.[32] Records of wolf attacks in India began to be kept during the British colonial administration in the 19th century.[33] In 1875, more people were killed by wolves than tigers, with the worst affected areas being the North West Provinces and Bihar. In the former area, 721 people were killed by wolves in 1876, while in Bihar, the majority of the 185 recorded deaths at the time occurred mostly in the Patna and Bghalpur Divisions.[34] In the United Provinces, 624 people were killed by wolves in 1878, with 14 being killed during the same period in Bengal. In Hazaribagh, Bihar, 115 children were killed between 1910-1915, with 122 killed and 100 injured in the same area between 1980-1986. Between April 1989 to March 1995, wolves killed 92 people in southern Bihar, accounting for 23% of 390 large mammal attacks on humans in the area at that time.[19][35] Police records collected from Korean mining communities during Japanese rule indicate that wolves attacked 48 people in 1928, more than those claimed by boars, bears, leopards and tigers combined.[36]

North America[edit]

A comprehensive review of wolf-human encounters in Canada and Alaska from 1915-2001 was compiled by Mark E. McNay of Alaska's Fish & Wildlife bureau in 2002. None were fatal. Of the 80 described encounters, 39 involved aggressive behavior from apparently healthy wolves and 12 from animals confirmed to be rabid.[37] A similar, 1944 report compiled by Young & Goldman, reviewed 30 accounts occurring before 1900, including six that may have been fatal. "Whether these reports are the product of a fertile imagination or are truth is difficult to determine," Young wrote in a preface, according to McNay.

A non-fatal attack in 2000 involving a 6-year-old boy in Icy Bay, Alaska was considered so unusual that it was reported in newspapers throughout the entire United States.[20][38]

Possibly the first fatal attack in modern North America occurred in 2005, when Kenton Joel Carnegie was killed in Saskatchewan, Canada. Two scientists who visited the scene concurred that Carnegie had probably been killed by a black bear, or possibly a wolf. But more than a year later, McNay, the Alaskan biologists, reviewed photos of the scene. His subsequent testimony convinced a local jury that Carnegie had in fact, been killed by wolves that had been habituated to humans.[39] In 2010, a woman was killed whilst jogging near Chignik Lake in Alaska.[40] At least two other relatively recent fatalities in North America involved captive wolves.

There were no written records of wolf attacks on humans prior to the European colonization of the Americas, though the oral history of some Native American tribes suggests that wolves occasionally did kill humans. Tribes living in woodlands feared wolves more than their tundra-dwelling counterparts, as they could encounter wolves suddenly and at close quarters.[41]

Six hundred years of wolf attacks worldwide; 1400 to 2013[edit]

Modern forensic methods and standards of checking data were unavailable for most data available to a group of Norwegian biologists conducting a comprehensive 2002 summary of world-wide wolf-attack reports covering several centuries (see bibliography). Information "is of highly variable quality" and "many records need to be treated with caution," they said. The following list includes data reviewed by the Norwegian survey, as well as from many other sources.

Number of Human Deaths due to Wolf Attacks1
CountryRegion/StateDeathsYear(s)Ref
AfghanistanHindu Kush181971[42]
Belarus2Throughout Belarus5
2
1
1937
1995
1996
[27]
[43]
[43]
CanadaPoints North, Saskatchewan12005[39]
EstoniaMostly Tartumaa136318th-19th centuries[42]
Finland4
Kaukola91831-1832[14]
Kemio31836[14]
Kivennapa211839-1850[14]
Tammerfors91877[14]
Åbo22-351879-1882[14]
FranceThroughout France3,2721580–1830[25]
Georgia
Shuakhevi12012[44]
Telavi12012[45]
Kakheti12009[46]
India
Bengal141878[19]
Bihar185
115
122
60
1876
1910-1915
1980-1986
1989-1995
[34]
[19]
[19]
[19]
Madhya Pradesh171985-1986[47]
North West Provinces7211876[34]
United Provinces6241878[19]
Uttar Pradesh501996[19][35]
IraqHilla12012[48]
Iran/PersiaTorbat Heydariya12005[49]
ItalyPo Valley5440c. 1400-1825[24]
Korea6Throughout the Korean peninsula11928[36]
LatviaCourland211875[27]
NorwaySørum, Akershus11800[14]
PolandThroughout Poland251897-1914[27]
Wągrowiec County191819[27]
Bieszczady Mountains11824[27]
RussiaThroughout Russia376
160
1849-1851
1875
[23]
[23]
Kirov Oblast10
22
4
1945-1947
1944-1950
1951-1953
[50]
[50]
[50]
Shuya, Ivanovo Oblast141847[51]
SpainVimianzo21957-1959[52]
Rante21974[52]
SlovakiaThroughout Slovakia3c. 1940-1961[52]
SwedenGästrikland/Dalarna121820-1821[14]
Värmland21727-1728[14]
Dalsland11731[14]
Västergötland11763[14]
USANoorvik, Alaska
Wainwright, Alaska
Chignik Lake, Alaska
1
1
1
1942
1943
2010
[53]
[53]
[40]
1. No comprehensive global database of fatal wolf attacks exists, and many countries do not keep official records. Due to the fragmentary nature of the data, the deaths reproduced here should be considered minimum figures only.
2. Includes areas once part of Poland.
3. These deaths are believed to have largely been caused by a combination of wolfdog hybrids and escaped captive wolves.[42]
4. Includes the modern day Russian Republic of Karelia.
5. Includes parts of modern day Switzerland.
6. Includes both the DPRK and ROK.

List of non fatal wolf attacks in North America[edit]

Because of the relative rarity of wolf attacks on humans in North America, some non-fatal attacks have been of interest to experts.[42]

Victim(s)AgeGenderDateType of attackLocationDetailsSource(s)
Daughter of a frontiersman named "Baker"18Summer, 1881Defending cowsNorthwestern Colorado, USAEncountered a wolf resting on a hill while on her way to bring in cows at dusk. The animal attacked her after she shouted and threw rocks to scare it away. It seized her by the shoulder, threw her to the ground, and badly bit her arms and legs before being shot by her brother.[54]
David TobukToddler1900PredatoryKoyukuk River, Alaska, USAIn the 1920s, Tobuk was a Native Alaskan steamboat captain who bore severe scarring as a result of a wolf attack he had suffered as a toddler. He was playing along the riverbank when a wolf appeared out of some bushes, seized Tobuk by the head, lifted and ran off with him in its jaws, but was shot by a nearby man.[37]
Diamond Jenness, Arctic explorer1915, February 10AgonisticCoppermine River, Northwest Territories, CanadaEarly in the morning, a female wolf entered the camp of an Arctic expedition and began fighting with the tethered sled dogs. Five men came out and tried to drive it away. The wolf charged at Diamond Jenness after he threw a rock and missed. Jenness grabbed the wolf by the back of the neck, but the wolf turned its head enough to severely bite his forearm. He choked the wolf with his other hand; it released, stepped back, and was shot by another man. The wound was treated and eventually fully healed, but Jenness never contracted rabies despite consistency of the wolf’s behavior with the early stages of the disease.[37]
Mike Dusiac, RailwaymanDecember 29, 1942Possibly rabidPoulin, Ontario, CanadaRiding a small rail vehicle called a speeder when a wolf leaped at him and bit his sleeve, knocking him down and knocking the vehicle off the track. Dusiac kept the wolf at bay for more than 25 minutes with an ax. He managed to hit the wolf repeatedly but not squarely enough. The wolf was not deterred by an approaching train which stopped to help Dusiac. Several railwaymen came running, but the wolf would not retreat. The men killed the wolf with picks and shovels. The carcass was inspected by a biologist, and it appeared healthy. However, Rutter and Pimlot reviewed the case in 1968 and concluded that it must have been rabid because of the sustained and determined nature of the attack.[37]
Zacarias Hugo141943Possibly rabidEtivluk River, Alaska, USAWhile hunting caribou, Zacarias heard a sound, turned and saw a large black wolf coming for him. It knocked him down and bit his arm, so he could not use his rifle. It bit his legs, back, arm and neck and dragged him 18 metres before abandoning the attack and disappearing. He walked back to camp, but had lost a lot of blood, mostly from his forearm. His caribou skin Anorak protected him from greater injury or even death, but may have contributed to the attack if it caused the wolf to mistake him for a caribou. This attack had long been classified as "rabid" because it occurred during an epizootic of the disease in that area and because Zac's father, Inualuruk, tracked the wolf and observed to have been walking at times in the splayed manner of a sick animal. However, neither the fact that the attack was abandoned in the way it was, nor the fact that Zacarias never developed the disease is not consistent with rabies.[37]
Thomas Hamilton1950Prey-testing agonistic chargeLower Foster Lake, Saskatchewan, CanadaWhile out hunting wolves, he laid down to aim his rifle, when the wolves arose and started running at him. He waited for a better shot, expecting the wolves to stop, but they did not. He shot the lead wolf at point blank range, prompting the rest to depart.[37]
Alex LamontSummer, 1969Prey-testing agonistic chargeNear Wien Lake, Alaska, USALamont saw two wolves running directly at him while walking home. He shot both after one of them bit his leg.[37]
Pipeline workers1971-1979Along the right-of-way for the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, from Prudhoe Bay to Valdez, Alaska, USAThere were ten "bites and charges", including a seriously bitten forearm. Causes included: a lack of trapping and hunting in certain areas; lack of barriers such as fencing, unsecured attractants such as trash, human attitudes and behaviors such as intentional feeding, and mutual habituation.[55]
Dr. Bob Piorkowski, Alaska Fish and Game, and his wife♂/♀October, 1975Prey-testing agonistic chargeTonzona River, Alaska, USA, near Denali National ParkWent outside their remote house near Denali National Park to see why their dog was barking, hoping it was a moose they could hunt. Five wolves came running straight at them, not at the dog, which was more than five meters away. Piorkowski was not ready to fire until the lead wolf was at point-blank range. He shot the next at ten meters away. Both wolves were dead, and the rest fled. Both wolves tested negative for rabies, and Piorkowski had one pelt mounted.[37] p. 17
David Lawrence71976, SummerPrey-testing agonistic chargeSalcha River, Alaska, USAWhile his father, Roy Lawrence, stood near the plane talking to the pilot, Ed Gavin, Roy saw a wolf charging focused directly at his son, David, who was crouching down to touch the water’s edge about 30m/33yards away. The moment Roy saw the wolf charging, it was 50m/55.5 yards from David and moving fast. Roy shouted for David to hide in the brush. When the wolf lost sight of him, it stopped, hopped, and stood on its hind legs trying to sight the boy again, allowing Galvin time to ready his weapon and fire. It was a young adult, underweight female, 32 kg/70.5 lbs.
Dr. M. Dawson, Paleontologist1977, June 28Prey-testing agonistic chargeEllesmere Island, Nunavut, CanadaDoing field work when they were approached by a pack of six wolves. They tried to drive them off by shouting, waving, and throwing clods of frozen dirt. The wolves were not deterred, and began to circle. The lead wolf leaped at Dawson's face, but Dawson pushed back with her arms and leaned backwards, pushing the wolf to the ground before it could bite her, and the wolves departed, but the strike was close enough for saliva from the wolf's flews to be left on her cheek. Munthe and Hutchinson (1978) interpreted the attack as testing of unfamiliar prey, but noted they didn't know if the wolves had encountered people before. McNay notes that the attack resembled others by wolves which had been fed.[37] p. 16
Hunter19January, 1982PredatoryNear Duluth, MN, USAAttacked unseen out of thick cover. Knocked down, the pair rolled on the ground, where he was able to keep it away by grabbing its throat. He could not aim but managed to discharge his weapon, and the wolf fled at the sound. The hunter received claw wounds to the thigh.[37]
Biologist1984Prey-testing agonistic charge185 km southeast of Churchill, Manitoba, CanadaThe wolf ran directly at three biologists, ears up, straight-tail, maintaining eye contact with one in particular. At two metres, he sounded an airhorn directly at the animal, which veered to one side and ran off.[37]
Robert Mulders, BiologistDecember 13, 1985Prey-testing AgonisticWhale Cove, Nunavut, CanadaTwo biologists netted a caribou from a helicopter and landed to perform tests and attach a radio collar. While working near the running blades of the helicopter, Mulders saw a wolf approaching. Both men stood, shouted, and waved their arms. When mulders stepped toward the wolf, it started circling and stalking, then rushed in and bit down on Mulders' lower leg and would not let go despite repeated punches by Mulders for 10–15 seconds until the other biologist, Mark Williams, knocked the wolf unconscious with the caribou radio collar. Mulders then took the collar and struck the wolf in the head twice and stabbed it in the chest with a knife. The bite tore open his pants but left only a small wound.[37]
Park visitors1987-1998Algonquin Provincial Park, Ontario, CanadaAll incidents were proceeded by extensive habituation. At first, the incidents were minor. In the first incident, in 1987, a sixteen-year-old girl was only briefly bitten, with the attack being classified as "disciplinary", as the girl had been annoying the wolf. Years later, wolves began stalking children in a predatory fashion.
In one of the most serious of these, a wolf grabbed and tossed a nineteen month-old boy, who was saved by his parents, but received multiple puncture wounds.
In another, a wolf dragged a twelve-year-old boy in a sleeping bag. His nose was broken and face lacerated before being saved by his father. The wolf went on to attack three women in two attacks before being shot. It was a healthy male with stomach contents scavenged from camps. The boy underwent reconstructive surgery.
In all, five people were bitten. In all cases, the wolves were killed, and rabies tests were negative.
[37]
Tabitha MullinJune, 1995AgonisticEllsmere Island, Nunavut, CanadaA wildlife biologist, Mullin was standing about five paces outside her front door on the Park warden’s base, observing and recording a pack of eleven wolves who approached and stopped inside 10 meters. One circled around closer, and she moved back toward the door. When she turned to open the door, the wolf grabbed and pulled her forearm. She pulled back, screamed, and her sleeves ripped; the wolf released; she got inside, closed the door, and the wolves left. She suspected photographers had been luring the wolves in with food. She was uninjured.[37]
Andy Greenblat, Bush pilot1997Prey-testing Agonistic chargeJoshua Green River Alaska, USAGreenblat was walking back to camp on a well-worn trail when he saw a wolf angling fast for a point ahead on the trail. When the wolf hit the trail it turned and ran directly at him, maintaining eye contact, ears forward. He yelled and waved his arms, and the wolf put its ears back but kept running and eye contact. At close range Andy was able to fire his weapon. The bullet missed, but the muzzle blast pushed the wolf off line, and the wolf missed. He swung the rifle and hit the wolf's skull; staggered, it ran off. Rabies was not suspected because the animal quickly gave up and ran away.[37]
Park visitorJune, 1999AgonisticVargas Island Provincial Park, British Columbia, CanadaAt about 2am, a wolf began dragging a sleeping man in a sleeping bag. The wolf had moved the man several meters away from the campfire when the man awoke, sat up, and shouted. The wolf stopped, stepped back, and attacked at the midsection, still encased in the sleeping bag. He fought it with his hands and arms, and rolled back towards the fire pit. The wolf bit him on the back and head, leaving multiple lacerations and separating a part of his scalp from the skull before being chased away by a group of other campers. The attack lasted about five minutes.
The man was transported to hospital in Victoria, BC, where his scalp flap was reattached with 50 stitches, and wounds to his hands and back were treated. Two wolves were killed the next day, tested negative for rabies, and identified as the same wolves which had been fed and played by people when they were pups. The same wolves had earlier that evening disturbed another camper, and two days earlier had menaced several nature photographers. The stomach contents showed no sign of scavenging human food.
[37]
John Stenglein, logging camp resident62000, April 26,PredatoryIcy Bay, Alaska, USAJohn and an older boy were playing near the edge of a logging camp when a wolf appeared and chased the boys, attacking John when he fell and dragging him and toward the woods. He was saved by his friend's Labrador retriever, Willie, followed by a group of people, and then John's father arrived and shot the wolf. It was neither sick nor starving, having been habituated to the presence of people. John received 19 laceration and puncture wounds on the back, legs, and buttocks.[20]
Noah Graham, camper162013, August 24, 4:30AMNear Lake Winnibigoshish, Minnesota, USAAwake and talking to his girlfriend when attacked from behind, biting his head. He kicked, screamed, punched, grabbed; and it disappeared. Was taken to the hospital for 17 staples to close a large head wound and to get precautionary injections. Authorities killed the wolf the next day and sent the body for rabies and DNA testing.[56] [57]

Notes[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Linnell 2002
  2. ^ a b c (Italian) Oriani, A. & Comincini, M. Morti causate dal lupo in Lombardia e nel Piemonte Orientale nel XVIII secolo, in atti del Seminario “Vivere la morte nel Settecento”, Santa Margherita Ligure 30 settembre - 2 ottobre 2002
  3. ^ a b c d Linnell 2002, p. 16
  4. ^ a b Linnell 2002, p. 36
  5. ^ Geist, Valerius (2006) When do Wolves become Dangerous to Humans?, The University of Calgary.
  6. ^ Mech 1981, p. 11
  7. ^ Heptner & Naumov 1998, p. 175
  8. ^ Mech & Boitani 2003, p. 106
  9. ^ a b Mech, L. D.(1990) Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?, Audubon, March. (Reprinted in International Wolf 2(3):3-7.)
  10. ^ a b Mech & Boitani 2003, pp. 300
  11. ^ Mech 1981, pp. 8–9
  12. ^ a b Mech, L. D. (1998), "Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?" -- Revisited. International Wolf 8(1): 8-11.
  13. ^ http://www.jstor.org/discover/10.2307/1375038?uid=3739728&uid=2129&uid=2&uid=70&uid=4&uid=3739256&sid=21103203840613
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Linnel, John D.C. (2003). "Is the fear of wolves justified? A Fennoscandian perspective". Acta Zoologica Lituanica 13 (1). 
  15. ^ Linnell 2002, p. 14
  16. ^ Heptner & Naumov 1998, p. 267
  17. ^ Linnell 2002, p. 15
  18. ^ a b c d Linnell 2002, p. 37
  19. ^ a b c d e f g h i Rajpurohit, K.S. 1999. Child lifting: Wolves in Hazaribagh, India. Ambio 28(2):162-166
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  56. ^ Rosenbaum, Sophia (August 28, 2013). "Teen survives first known wolf attack in Minnesota". NBC News. nbcnews.com. Retrieved 18 November 2013. "Noah Graham, 16, of Solway, Minn. was camping with friends from church near Lake Winnibigoshish when, while talking to his girlfriend at 4:30 a.m. Saturday, a wolf pounced and bit him in the head." 
  57. ^ Spring, Joe (MONDAY, JANUARY 6, 2014). "When Wolves Attack". OUTSIDE ONLINE. Mariah Media. Retrieved 7 January 2014. 

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