Wolves at GWDC
The Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center is home to nine grey wolves that live in different packs. The wolves were born in captivity and are unable to live in the wild. The facilities they were born in did not have room to keep them and the GWDC was able to provide them a home. Here, the wolves give visitors an up-close look at their normally secretive lives.
Features such as tall grass, logs, trees and a pond with a waterfall give the wolves a very comfortable natural home. The keepers provide plenty of stimulation by hiding bones or sprinkling spices and other unusual scents. Live trout are added to the pond during the summer. A natural diet of elk and deer meat, hides and bones are provided by local hunters and meat processors.
Meet the Wolves…
BRIDGER, OBSIDIAN AND SHASTA
The Hoodoo wolf pack consists of three wolves. They arrived at the Center as pups from another captive facility in Montana in the spring of 2019. Bridger is a male named after Jim Bridger, a mountain man and wilderness scout after which the Bridger mountain range was named. His brother, Obsidian, is named after the black volcanic glass that forms Obsidian Cliff in Yellowstone. Their sister, Shasta, is named after the Shasta pack, which was the first wild wolf pack in California in nearly a century. These three littermates are very playful and curious, and spend a lot of time chasing each other around their habitat. This pack helps us to appreciate the role of wolves in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Adopt the Hoodoo Pack
SURA, BOULDER, COLTER, HARLEQUIN AND MERIWETHER
The Fossil Butte Pack wolf pack consisted of two adult wolves from another captive facility in Montana. They arrived at the Center in the fall of 2019 Sura, the Inuit word for “new life”, a female was nine years old and Lakota, a male was 13. On April 30, 2020, Sura gave birth to a litter of four puppies. While breeding animals at the GWDC has been extremely rare, management made the decision to let this one-time breeding take place. Parents Sura and Lakota taught and protected the pups as they developed their own personalities and status within a pack structure.
In December of 2020 it was felt that Lakota’s quality of life was severely compromised by mobility challenges that progressively got worse and the humane conclusion was made to euthanize him.
Sura continues to parent and teach the pups as they grow into adult-hood.
The Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center’s River Valley pack consisted of two wolves, Akela and Kootenai. They arrived at the Center as 5-week-old pups in the spring of 2007 from another captive facility in Montana. In the Fall of 2020 Akela passed away from Pancreatic Cancer. Her brother Kootenai was named after Kootenai National Forest in Montana and the Kootenai Native American Tribe in Idaho. He has a narrow head with a fluffy light grey coat. Kootenai has a very playful personality. He will often howl and interact with the Center’s other wolves. Adopt Kootenai.