How do red wolves hunt?


Quick Answer

According to Defenders of Wildlife, red wolves hunt primarily at night in small packs or alone. The wolves are not very fast and must have the stamina to outlast their prey in order to catch them.

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Full Answer

Red wolves eat deer, raccoons, rabbits, rodents, berries and even bugs, if necessary. They typically live and hunt in packs of five to eight wolves. One pack includes a single adult breeding pair and their offspring of different ages. When hunting as a pack, the red wolves surround their prey, giving it no place to go. The wolves are sneaky and very quiet when approaching their prey. They wait until the time is right to strike and move in together. The wolves typically kill their prey by ripping out its jugular. This brings the animal down quickly. If the animal escapes, the wolves follow until the prey has fallen.

The average size of a well-fed adult red wolf ranges from 50 to 80 pounds. Since their near extinction in the 1980s, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has facilitated the breeding of 207 red wolves in captivity at 38 different breeding centers. Thanks to programs reintroducing red wolves to their native habitat, there are over 100 red wolves living in the wild as of 2014.

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