The wolves had an unplanned observance of Fat Tuesday when a farmer donated an 800lb cow. Normally we don’t take animals of that size since we can’t store something so huge and the wolves don’t eat it fast enough, but it’s winter so we can leave the meat out longer, and we’re lower on deer than we’d like to be.
We distributed the legs and head to various groups, and then let the boy pups have first go at the torso. The boy and girl pups are currently separated for the breeding season, so the girls had a leg to themselves and a front-row seat to watching the boys figure out how to handle the biggest carcass they’d ever encountered.
The boys were a little frightened of this mountain of flesh. They did a lot of circling and cautious poking before realizing, “it’s made of meat!”. The cow had also arrived with some straw and manure attached. The boys alternated between rolling in the straw, and eating off the carcass.
By evening, we had an assortment of very round wolves sleeping off a heavy meal.
Valentine’s Day falls during the animals’ breeding season, so some years romance is in the air. This was not one of those. The girl pups spent the season separated from their brothers, because we want our girls to be grown-ups before they consider children and begin dating non-related wolves. Timber also sat the breeding season out, despite flirting a lot through the fence with Wotan and Wolfgang. Fiona continues to tell the boys that they are icky, and Ayla tells us she is too old for such games. No puppies this year, and we’re glad to continue giving the 2017 pups lots of attention as they head into their second year of life.
Over in the fox den, Scarlette and Joker coupled-up for one whole day. Joker was cute, attentive, and irritating for several days during the stretch in which he wanted Scarlette all to himself, and she really wanted to play with her human visitors. She spent a lot of time sleeping in huts, and whining if he got too close. They are now back to their old married couple routine, and the happier for it.