Updates

What are the wolves up to?

Further photos and updates are available on the "UKWCT Friends" Facebook group.
(Please note: the group is not an official UKWCT site; opinions and views posted there may differ from those of the UKWCT.)

Previous updates are available: September 2019, August, July, May/June, March/Apri , January/February, November/December 2018 and September/October 2018

Tala

12th October 2019

We all arrived carrying wellies and waterproofs due to the nonstop rain! When we were open to the public it was very rare to cancel a walk and just in case you were wondering, we still go out with the wolves in all weathers!
It was good to see Mosi and Torak standing close together when I arrived. Her medication has been reduced and she seemed more her old self.
Instead of getting the Beenhams into the holding enclosure before the walk, today it was decided to bring them onto the hard standing from their main enclosure. This is an exercise that fails mostly and today was no exception. All 3 wolves played and jumped around and showed zero interest in us and the hard standing. We went into the enclosure but they were too busy chasing and running around each other and paying attention to everything else, except us. We came back onto the hard standing and Sean went off to get some fish to entice them into the holding area as they tend to come onto the hard standing willingly from there. Cammie went in to open the holding area gate while all 3 wolves came and stood quietly behind her, waiting. As soon as the gate was open, in they went all calm and well behaved. Sean gave them the fish and as soon as we opened up the hard standing, in they trotted. It seems we were being told, no fish, no walk!

Despite the rain, we had a great walk with Tundra, Tala and Nuka. Only Tala rolled around in something smelly today. Once we got to the bottom field, the church bells started and soon enough all 3 wolves were singing their song in tune to the bells. We all love to stand quietly listening to them as the sound goes straight into you. There was plenty of time for all 3 to have lots of fusses with us with Nuka falling over at any opportunity to get a belly rub.

After the walk we made a big fuss of the Arctics who were excited to see us and we then went back into the dry for our lunch.
After we were all fed and watered, we took Mai out who was eager to explore. She took an unusual interest in the tractor, rubbing herself all around the front wheels which is more like Nuka’s preference! Upon closer inspection, we realised the tyres were new. Nuka also loves new rubber which is great fun for him when he finds someone wearing new wellies!
Mai had a good walk all around the big field and then, as is her usual way, marched everyone back to her enclosure where Motomo and the Arctics were waiting. True to form, she ignored Motomo, ran over to the Arctics and ran all the way up the fencing with them and Motomo in hot pursuit. Later Motomo could be seen sniffing her all over, wondering why she was giving off a strange aroma.

While there was a brief dry spell, we took the tortoises outside and they enjoyed a walk and quite a long time munching on clover. I cleaned up their pen and noticed how cosy it was in there now the heat lamp is coming on for them. We prepared their food which they completely ignored when they were back in their pen, having filled themselves up on clover.
Having prepared all the food for the wolves, we fed them and noted down who was hungry, very hungry and not so hungry.

The rain started again, but we went in to Tundra, Tala and Nuka’s enclosure for some quality time with them. Nuka, unusually for him gave a few of us the head rubbing treatment, which we noted was stronger than the girls’ head rubs. He had a go at bouncing around on the platform wanting us to play. Once he realised he wasn’t getting anywhere with that idea, he launched himself off the platform, over my head, using my back as leverage with one of his front paws. Then he was gone, leaving the 2 girls to get some more fusses from us.
Before the heavy rain came, we reluctantly left them and all headed home. It was a great day in the company of wolves.
Update and most photos by Eve, Tala photo by Matt.
Arctics, Mai, Tala and the Beenhams

Arctics

6th October 2019

Having rained all night it was rewarding to see clear skies and lots of sun this morning when we arrived at the Trust.

After the Beenhams were cajoled into heir holding area with some fish, we ventured out first with Massak, Pukak and Sikko, our Arctic wolves.
It was quite windy this morning which seemed to make Sikko a little skittish to begin with, but after a while, once we were in the open fields, she settled down. All 3 found very dark and smelly deposits to roll around in, making their pristine white coats look decidedly grubby. The walk was uneventful, although Massak spent some time now and again with tail held high grumbling at Pukak, for what appeared to be for no apparent reason! The grumble/growls is a wonderful sound to hear so close up.

Once back in their enclosure, we said hi to Mosi who was squeaking and doing her usual howl greeting. As it had warmed up, I took the tortoises outside for some clover and sunshine, while we all had a drink before taking out the Beenhams, Nuka, Tundra and Tala for their walk.

All 3 were keen as usual to get out and greeted all of us, with Nuka bouncing about, defying his mature adult wolf age of 8 and a half years. We had a muntjac craftily run out behind us without the wolves seeing him, but usually they don’t chase animals that appear. As they are fed regularly, they are not in the mood for chasing prey. In the wild they can go 2-3 weeks without eating, so here they are well cared for!
The weather had warmed up and the wolves enjoyed having a dip in the bottom field stream, with Tala churning up the water and all of them having a good drink. Nuka found some very strong smelling fox poo that he ecstatically rolled in for a while. This smell, even if you don’t come into contact with it, may stay with you even once you have reached home! We all stopped for some fusses in the field behind the enclosure before heading back. Always a special time, the Beenhams are much more keen for a fuss than the Arctics are on their walks. Tundra jumped into the trough once they were back in their enclosure while we left them to it and headed back for another drink and some lunch.

The clouds were starting to thicken so we were keen to take Torak and Mosi out before the rains came. They had both been following our movements all day, checking to see if the right people were here to take them out. Once they were out we walked through the field behind the enclosures. It was good to see Mosi more her old self. Her medication has been reduced recently which has helped her regain her demeanour. She had a howling session which is always great fun to witness – her eyes often look cross-eyed in mid-howl. Torak maintained his usual aloof and regal posture while all the other wolves heads appeared amongst the tall grasses, watching the proceedings.

After Torak and Mosi were back in their enclosure, we took Mai out who as usual stormed along with her tail in the air, showing off to all the other wolves watching her parade. Motomo followed her progress from their enclosure. After 4 walks, there were a lot of tired human legs, but no doubt no tired wolves' legs!

The food for them and the tortoises was prepared and everyone was fed. It was noted most of the wolves were hungry, which is to be expected at this time of year. Their food intake is monitored and the amount increased should they continue to ‘wolf’ down their food. We had to clean out the tortoises pen again! Now they have nice new fresh hay and food. We brought them back inside after they had been munching on the clover outside and enjoying the sunshine.

Quite a few people left after feeding, leaving only a few of us to enjoy the delights of spending time in the enclosure of Nuka, Tala and Tundra. I stayed outside for a while, hoping to catch a few photos of the greetings and was not disappointed. Nuka tried to encourage some play and then scooted off. Both of the girls carried out some lovely dance moves as they rubbed themselves over everyone’s heads. By the time I got in there they had lost interest and wandered off for a rest and digest their dinners.
It was a wonderful day and we all left a bit tired, but very happy!
Update by Eve.
Beenhams
Arctics, tortoise
Mosi and Torak
Mai and Motomo