What Does a Wolf Eat?

Wolves are carnivores and mainly eat large mammals, the exact species varying depending on the location. They also supplement their diet with fruits such as apples, pears, melons and various types of berries.

Wolves hunt in packs. In North America, they take down large animals such as elk, moose, musk ox, caribou, mule deer, white-tailed deer, bison and bighorn sheep. In Europe and Asia, they hunt moose, red deer, wild boar, reindeer, ibex, chamois and wild goats. They typically cull the young, old or disabled out of herds. When large animals are scarce, wolves feed on other types of smaller mammals such as foxes, weasels, marmots, hares, badgers, squirrels, mice and other rodents. Occasionally they eat lizards, frogs, snakes, large insects, and birds and their eggs. Some hunt seals by the shores of the Caspian Sea, while others in Western Canada fish for salmon. In Nepal and in Saudi Arabia, wolves have been known to hunt for primates such as monkeys and baboons.

When food is scarce, wolves have been known to resort to cannibalism, attacking and eating old or injured pack members. They also eat carrion. Though they sometimes feed on domestic animals such as cows and sheep, attacks upon humans are very rare.