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Former featured articleWolf is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Good articleWolf has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
Main Page trophyThis article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on October 31, 2005.
Article milestones
August 22, 2005Peer reviewReviewed
August 29, 2005Featured article candidatePromoted
September 19, 2007Featured article reviewDemoted
November 10, 2009Peer reviewReviewed
April 1, 2012Good article nomineeListed
Current status: Former featured article, current good article


Hi there. I don't have much experience suggesting wikipedia edits and am sorry if the format is incorrect.

The artie says that grey wolves are the largest species in the canis family. However, I believe this is incorrect considering very large dogs such as the Great Dane. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:03, 15 July 2018 (UTC)

The Great Dane is a breed, not a species. And their size is not significantly different than the largest known wolf specimens. Mediatech492 (talk) 17:37, 19 July 2018 (UTC)
Further, the Great Dane is a dog (with the English Mastiff weighing even more). According to the huge genome-wide study by Fan 2016, the dog is a gray wolf. Therefore, lupus remains the largest species in genus Canis. Part of the misunderstanding is that many people cannot picture the true size of the large, northern-most wolves. Thank-you for your interest in Gray wolf. William Harris • (talk) • 08:31, 26 July 2018 (UTC)

Requested move 2 August 2018[edit]

The following is a closed discussion of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on the talk page. Editors desiring to contest the closing decision should consider a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The result of the move request was: Moved. Consensus is that this particular wolf, including its subspecies, is the one people are most likely looking for when they search for wolf. Some rescoping to include further details on subspecies, per RedSlash's suggestion may be in order, but the article already covers this in places so it's not a major change.  — Amakuru (talk) 14:09, 10 August 2018 (UTC)

Gray wolfWolf – I think Gray wolf should be moved to Wolf because it already redirects here and seems to be the primary use although other animals called wolves are not gray wolves. If consensus is against moving this page, I suggest moving the disambiguation page to Wolf. 2601:196:8601:58B3:90CF:2EB9:3F5E:664D (talk) 17:57, 2 August 2018 (UTC)

I'm not sure why Wolf redirects to this page; it would be better for it to redirect to Wolf (disambiguation). Re-titling this article is not the solution. Mediatech492 (talk) 19:13, 2 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support, see first lead paragraph. Wolf, as commonly known, are gray wolves, although other wolves exist this page seems to be the primary. Randy Kryn (talk) 01:31, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
The assertion: "Wolf = Grey Wolf" is a fallacy; the fact that many people do not know the difference is not justification. We have to work on facts, not POV assumptions, no matter how widespread they may be. Mediatech492 (talk) 05:20, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
The numbers make a difference, over 4,200 clicks on this page a day compared to 142 a day who then go to the disambiguation page. This shows that people looking for "wolf" are overwhelmingly looking for this page. The disambiguation link in the hatnote guides the rest. Randy Kryn (talk) 11:58, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
That is a fallacious argument. Those stats only reflect the fact that the system automatically redirects the users to the specific article, rather than the disambiguation. Not everyone who types in "Wolf" is specifically looking for the grey wolf. Mediatech492 (talk) 13:48, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Both the Italian and Arctic wolf pages state in the lead sentence that they are subspecies of gray wolf. Or as more commonly known, wolf. Randy Kryn (talk) 12:02, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Oppose. There are are entirely separate species whose common name also includes "wolf", and I'm not just talking about recent developments wherein questions have been raised as to whether some populations currently recognized as subspecies, such as the Himalayan wolf, should be considered separate species. The unadorned term "wolf" is ambiguous, and "gray wolf" acts as natural disambiguation for those purposes. "Wolf" should probably be the location if the disambiguation page instead of a redirect to here. oknazevad (talk) 10:24, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Maybe Wolf can be a broad-concept article since there are different types of wolves that are not gray wolves. --2601:196:8400:C90:98AA:EF7D:4A5D:ABA8 (talk) 11:15, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
    I'd agree with that for the same reason as Panda. Crouch, Swale (talk) 11:58, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
* Oppose: Topic should be organised in a hierarchy from the general to the specific. "Wolf" is general, "Grey Wolf" is specific. Mediatech492 (talk) 13:43, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
  • So 4,200 people a day will have to go to a disambiguation page before coming here? Not making it easy for the readers. The subtopics say in the lead sentence that they are "subspecies of gray wolves" or related language. Gray wolf = wolf. Per common name. Randy Kryn (talk) 19:18, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
Can you provide any evidence that all 4200 users are looking specifically for "Grey Wolf" when they type in "wolf"? As for your claim of inconvenience, the the half second it takes to find and click on a disambiguation link is hardly any sort of inconvenience to anyone. Mediatech492 (talk) 01:08, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support per nom. Khestwol (talk) 20:51, 3 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support, but with "wolf" as a redirect to Canis, whose members are pretty much all wolves (the African jackals are soon going to be renamed Lupulella anyway). Mariomassone (talk) 07:40, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support – Unadorned "wolf" is the WP:COMMON NAME for the grey wolf, and it's also the most WP:CONCISE article title. A simple {{other uses}} hatnote can helpfully point readers to other kinds of wolves. — JFG talk 08:44, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
"Wolf" is also the WP:common name of some 15 other species of canids. SO it is definitely not the most concise title. Furthermore, your assertion that the gray wolf is the most familiar species is a WP:POV assertion, not shared globally. Mediatech492 (talk) 15:11, 4 August 2018 (UTC)
Look at the page views of readers that come to this page, either through "Wolf" or "Gray Wolf", and stay, compared with those who go on to the disambu page. Over 25-1. At a minimum we should leave this page as Gray wolf but keep the "Wolf" redirect, meaning no move in either direction. Randy Kryn (talk) 11:14, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support and slightly rescope the article to directly account for the subspecies. Red Slash 13:43, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
    • Comment: That's just it, animals like the African golden wolf and Ethiopian wolf aren't subspecies of Canis lupus, but distinct species (Canis anthus and Canis simensis respectively). And that's not counting animals where the taxonomy is still unsettled, like the red wolf and eastern timber wolf, which may be separate species from C. lupus, or may not (and maybe two subspecies of the same species as each other). There the science is still out. In short "wolf" is a term used for many members of the genus Canis, not just C. lupus, and a move or redirect would be making the situation more ambiguous, which is inappropriate. oknazevad (talk) 14:52, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
      • Your two examples seem at odds with their pages, and both species seem to have evolved from Gray wolves. The article African golden wolf has a contradiction in the same sentence: "In 2015, a series of analyses on the species' mitochondrial DNA and nuclear genome demonstrated that it was in fact distinct from both the golden jackal and the grey wolf, and more closely related to grey wolves and coyotes." The page on the Ethiopian wolf, however, says that "In 1994, a mitochondrial DNA analysis showed a closer relationship to the gray wolf and the coyote than to other African canids, and C. simensis may be an evolutionary relic of a gray wolf-like ancestor's past invasion of northern Africa from Eurasia." All Wikipedia's wolf-trodden roads seem to lead back to the gray wolf. Randy Kryn (talk) 16:05, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
          • Actually, what they lead back to is common descent from a canid that has descendants that include the grey wolf as well as the others, and that those descendants are pretty closely related, but not the same species. Please see the phylogenetic tree in this article and the references supporting it. oknazevad (talk) 20:13, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
That doesn't mean the Ethiopian wolf is synonymous with the gray wolf, that just means the Ethiopian wolf is, indeed, a wolf as opposed to a jackal   User:Dunkleosteus77 |push to talk  19:28, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Oppose There're more wolves than just the gray wolf, there's the red wolf, Ethiopian wolf, dire wolf, eastern wolf, etc.   User:Dunkleosteus77 |push to talk  19:28, 6 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support. "Wolf" is the clear common name for the gray wolf and the gray wolf is the clear primary topic for "wolf" (which already redirects here, of course). -- Necrothesp (talk) 13:19, 8 August 2018 (UTC)
  • Support and rescope, per Red Slash. The clear primary topic of the term is the prototypical image of the "wolf", all canine meanings being WP:DABCONCEPT to that. bd2412 T 01:14, 10 August 2018 (UTC)
  • If we rescope the article, then what serves as the article on the distinct species Canis lupus? That is what would be lost. Bad idea. oknazevad (talk) 02:52, 10 August 2018 (UTC)

The above discussion is preserved as an archive of a requested move. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made in a new section on this talk page or in a move review. No further edits should be made to this section.

The wolf[edit]

It is unfortunate that the views of 3 long-serving Gray wolf contributors were overlooked with this WP:MOVE decision. It would appear that this article now reflects what "most people are looking for", and that WP:PRECISION was ignored. What most people are looking for is the modern (Holocene) grey wolf Canis lupus. The scene is now set for the creation of the article about the extinct Pleistocene grey wolf Canis lupus, which is not the modern grey wolf. Things are about to become unclear. William Harris • (talk) • 00:34, 19 August 2018 (UTC)

Man-eating species?[edit]

Wolves, including medium-to-giant dogs, have killed humans as food. This is rare and out of character. It has happened, and it is documented. The essence of man-eating is two elements: first, a killing of a person, and second, significant consumption of the person's flesh as meat. This rules out scavenging (which a domestic cat could do, but a domestic cat is highly unlikely to kill a human), but it does not rule out a defense of territory that becomes lethal.

This said, wolves are much less likely to kill humans for food than bears or Big Cats. With a dog, the chance is so slight (and it usually involves human misconduct) that the hazards of dogs and wolves are far less than those of encounters with large herbivores. Even a horse, probably the best-behaved of giant herbivores, is more lethal than a dog.

There is no question of ability. Dogs and wolves have the power, speed, agility, strength, cunning, voracity, keen senses, and sharp claws and teeth characteristic of such animals as bears and Big Cats that make those animals lethal. They are simply better behaved.Pbrower2a (talk) 17:39, 1 September 2018 (UTC)

No, wolves are not man eaters. Wolf attacks on humans are, as I understand it, extremely rare. The societal image of a wolf pack tracking, killing, and eating a human is an incorrect imaginary meme [edit 4 September: although evidence further down the page documents one known instance], probably used to frighten children not to wander off into the woods. And is this about adding the category:Man-eating species, which you did and which was correctly quickly reverted? Wolves aren't even close to being a member of that category, maybe on the same order as including Red Panda. Randy Kryn (talk) 18:21, 1 September 2018 (UTC)
The capability to eat a human is not sufficient qualifier to define a species as a maneater. There is no doubt that Killer Whales are quite capable of eating humans, but such predatory attacks are unheard of. Likewise wolf attacks on humans are extremely rare. In the last century there were less than 100 documented wolf attacks on people in North America. In the vast majority of these cases the cause was attributed to disease (most often rabies), or human encroachment on wolf habitat. While many such cases result in injuries, there are few that involve a person's death; and in even fewer cases are the victims eaten. Confirmed cases of healthy wolves attacking humans for food are virtually non-existent. Mediatech492 (talk) 18:30, 1 September 2018 (UTC)
Additionally, some of these "recorded" attacks are largely based on non-WP:RELIABLE sources including sensationalized media articles, some of which date back into the 1800s. I have left a message on the Talk page of this category asking its creator (i.e. User:Pbrower2a) to define its purpose and scope - what defines a maneater, and which expert reliable sources say so? William Harris • (talk) • 21:46, 1 September 2018 (UTC)
Any documented predatory attack (which may begin with a defense of territory) that results in the killing and partial eating of a person is man0eating.

There are plenty of stories in Wikipedia on "Wolf of..." There is no question that wolves and dogs are potential man-eaters by ability. I am fully aware that there is no documented case of a healthy wolf making an unprovoked attack upon a human being in North America. But that's not to say that all wolves are healthy, and I would certainly never provoke a wolf.

It is possible that those medieval accounts reflect a time in which wolves were more aggressive, perhaps because humans were less likely to be in large groups and did not yet have the sorts of weapons (firearms) that made humans too dangerous as prey.

Now -- were the accounts reliable? Maybe they weren't all reliable. Death was commonplace, and anyone who died unseen was going to be scavenged. Blaming the wolf was easy.

Almost all accounts of wolves eating human flesh in modern times involve scavenging, which does not fit the category of 'man-eating'. But in pre-modern times? The dense forests of medieval Europe were places from which children never returned, and wolves were the presumed culprits. Feral dogs could also be the killers -- but wolves and dogs are the same species, anyway.Pbrower2a (talk) 04:38, 3 September 2018 (UTC)

For the record, there are documented cases of healthy wolves attacking humans unprovoked in North America (see for example the source for the 2010 case in the Attacks on humans section of this article). Also, why is the qualifier "In North America" constantly brought up? Canis lupus isn't endemic to that continent and there are hundreds of cases that have been verified by biologists in India.
That said, I don't see the point in the category. Mariomassone (talk) 06:10, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
As has already been explained, wolves attack for many other reasons than food. Only a minuscule fraction of cases of wolf attacks on humans have ever been attributed to predation. In the 2010 case the wolves was also evidence of bear presence, which puts doubt on whether the victim Kenton Carnegie was in fact killed by the wolves. The evidence in tha case supports the proposal that the wolves were only opportunistic feeders on an already dead corpse. This would make them scavengers, not predators. Mediatech492 (talk) 14:53, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
Mediatech492, Carnegie was killed in 2005. The 2010 case involving Candice Berner was unambiguously the work of wolves, and you can check out the full report here. Mariomassone (talk) 16:47, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
@Mariomassone: You obviously did not read a word of that report. For starters, the body of Candice Berner was found recognizably intact, which itself is evidence that it definitely was not a predatory attack. Had the wolves hunted to eat, the body would have been reduced to bones and scraps within a matter of hours. Try to find some evidence for your argument that doe s not refute itself please. Mediatech492 (talk) 04:02, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
@Mediatech492, The wolves didn't have "a matter of hours":
Based on the short amount of time that elapsed between the last known location of the deceased (fax sent from Chignik Lake School) and the discovery of her body two miles from Chignik Lake (approximately 50 minutes), and the number of events that transpired prior to the discovery of her body, it is plausible that she encountered the wolves soon after starting her run. p. 12
When a group of residents returned to retrieve the body, it had been moved farther down the hill to a location with brush cover, and more of it had been consumed. p. 18
This appears to have been an aggressive, predatory attack that was relatively short in duration. p. 18
Further details from Nick Jans, who interviewed the investigators for his book "A wolf called Romeo":
Berner had suffered numerous bites, including fatal punctures to her neck, and portions of one buttock, shoulder, and arm had been eaten. If her body hadn't been recovered, it would likely have been consumed down to hair and bone fragments, like any wolf kill. p. 80
You'll excuse me then if I defer to the conclusions made by the people who actually investigated the scene. Mariomassone (talk) 12:49, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
Again, you base your conclusion on the flawed report, the conclusions of which have been heavily criticized. The report shows the wolves scavenged the body, but that does not mean they made the kill. The wolves had plenty of time to consume the body had this been a predatory kill. The very fact that the body was recognizable without forensic identification is proof enough that this was not a feeding kill. Also wolves do not usually move a kill, however bears do; and there was abundant evidence of bears in the vicinity. The fact that wolves scavenged the corpse is not at issue, the questions, which the report fails to establish, is did wolves kill the victim; and the evidence for this is dubious. Even if the wolves did kill the victim, the fact that the body was mostly intact shows the did not do it for food. Mediatech492 (talk) 20:22, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
You really do appear to be confusing this case with the Kenton Carnegie case. No one ever brought up bears in the Berner case, and most wolf advocating organisations accept the wolves' culpability in it.
Let's break this down:
1. You say "The report shows the wolves scavenged the body, but that does not mean they made the kill". Actually, it gives a detailed description of the tracks left on the scene, which clearly showed the victim turning upon seeing the wolves, being chased, knocked down twice and losing a lot of blood in the process. See page 10.
2. You say "The wolves had plenty of time to consume the body had this been a predatory kill." Less than fifty minutes, during which the wolves had to spend time tracking her, chasing her and killing her before they could begin feeding. What happened to your "matter of hours" claim?
3. You say "The very fact that the body was recognizable without forensic identification is proof enough that this was not a feeding kill." The wolves didn't have time to make her unrecogniseable, and they ate parts of her arm, shoulder and buttocks.
3. You say "Also wolves do not usually move a kill, however bears do". Wrong. See Linnel et al. 2002, specifically page 16: The bodies are often dragged away and consumed unless the wolves are disturbed.
4. You say "there was abundant evidence of bears in the vicinity". False. See p. 9. The only tracks found at the scene were wolf ones.
Do yourself a favor and actually read the report instead of pretending to have done so. Mariomassone (talk) 21:28, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
Mariomassone, good analysis, although I haven't clicked on the report (hesitant to do random clicks). Do you recall from the report how many wolves that the DNA, fur, scat, tracks and tracking evidence showed were present? Did scat analysis provide important information? Thanks. Randy Kryn (talk) 17:12, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
One more question (as Columbo would say that time he convicted a wolf of murder). How long did it take for the hunting parties to hunt down and kill these wolves, and what did the animal autopsies show? Randy Kryn (talk) 17:17, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
Randy Kryn Berner was killed on March 8. Two wolves were killed on March 15, five on March 25, and another the day later:
At least two wolves left DNA on the body and clothing. One of these wolves (2010-037), an adult female in excellent body condition, was killed on March 26 near the location where the attack occurred. Samples from this wolf were most prevalent in the collected forensic samples. The other wolf is unknown as it was not one of the wolves culled near Chignik Lake. The DNA investigation also concluded that as many as three to four wolves may have left DNA evidence, but that conclusion is less certain due to a lack of data replication. It was also recognized that there could have been more than four wolves involved in the attack as some individuals involved may not have left adequate or recoverable DNA - p. 17
As to the autopsies:
All eight of the culled wolves tested negative for rabies and distemper. The histopathology reports from the Washington Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (Washington State University, Pullman, Washington) found parasites that are considered clinically insignificant. No conditions were found that would have predisposed these animals towards aggressive behavior. When viewed as a representative sample of the wolf population in the vicinity of Chignik Lake, these findings greatly reduce the possibility that the wolves involved in the attack were in an abnormal condition that would have predisposed these wolves to an attack. Six of the eight wolves culled were in good to excellent condition - p. 16 Mariomassone (talk) 18:43, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
Thank you again for a good analysis. Randy Kryn (talk) 18:58, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
An interesting conclusion to this tragic event: "Jogging alone and other solo activities in remote parts of Alaska entail inherent risk, but an attack by wolves is not considered to be a risk commensurate with bear attacks, inclement weather or personal injury." William Harris • (talk) • 00:54, 4 September 2018 (UTC)
In colonial times, children got lost in Australian forests and never returned - is it your contention that wolves were responsible for that as well? With "wolves and dogs are the same species, anyway" I assume that you observe no behavioural differences between the two, and that Dog should be designated as a maneater? What about human cannibalism - should we badge Human as well? You state that "Any documented predatory attack (which may begin with a defense of territory) that results in the killing and partial eating of a person is maneating." - are you able to WP:CITE expert WP:RELIABLE sources which other editors can WP:VERIFY to support that position? That is what Wikipedia requires. If you can supply that, and it matches wolf behaviour, then I am satisfied.
(You do realize what you have done coming here, I trust? The conservation and rebuilding of wolf populations after 10,000 years of human persecution that was leading towards their extinction is not helped by you labelling them as "maneaters" based on a comparatively few cases. I use "few" when comparing the recorded cases with the hundreds of thousands of wolves that have lived in historical times. Wolves have a bad media reputation that is unwarranted - people on this page are aware of that, and will challenge proposals that are not supported.) William Harris • (talk) • 21:14, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
"Little Red Riding Hood" (or is it Big Bad Wolf?). All the proof we need. Randy Kryn (talk) 21:45, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
That work was responsible for much of the prejudice against wolves across all of the English-speaking world and much of Western Europe, for a thousand years, and it was drummed into us as impressionable children at school. (It is also one of the reasons why I no longer trust the Education "system".) William Harris • (talk) • 21:56, 3 September 2018 (UTC)
Thank you, I did not know the story is over a thousand years old. A long-lasting and deeply injuring meme. And as you point out, a prejudice which has affected human perception and decision making regarding wolves (one of the most intelligent and loving species) for over a millennium. Our Little Red Riding Hood page here, and the Big Bad Wolf article, should have descriptors of the incorrectness of this meme in their lede paragraph or two (if they don't have now). And maybe this Wolf page should have it accented in the lede as well. If those additions can be made, if they don't exist now, then the attempt here - an attempt to put wolves on the man-eating animal list for pete's sake (literally for Peter's sake) - may actually result in an increase of correct encyclopedic text. Text which enhances Wikipedia reader knowledge and perception levels as well as adding neutrality to the thousand year old inaccuracies contained within the tale. Randy Kryn (talk) 02:49, 4 September 2018 (UTC)

Fictional accounts, and especially fairy tales, are never reliable sources on animal behavior, according to Wikipedia. Thus Peter Benchley's Jaws is not a valid source for putting the Great White Shark on the list of man-eating species. (Those sharks do not hunt humans, as human flesh is too low in fat to satisfy them).

This said, children who got lost in the woods often never got home. They usually died of thirst or exposure and of course were scavaged. A wolf doing exactly what a scavenger would be expected to do, often got undue blame, unlike a vulture. But there are medieval accounts of wolves taking children. Were the children alive or already dead? Child mortality was extremely high in the Middle Ages.Pbrower2a (talk) 18:21, 7 September 2018 (UTC)

Could I remind everyone that talk pages are not forums for general discussion, and that articles must be based on reliable sources, not editors' opinions or personal knowledge, which cannot be verified and are therefore disallowed as original research. Chiswick Chap (talk) 13:16, 14 October 2018 (UTC)

Scavenging does not count as man-eating, or we would have to include such animals as domestic cats as man-eaters. An incident that can be explained as scavenging is thus not man-eating, even if by one of the most fearsome of predators. Are reports by semi-literate or illiterate people of the Middle Ages reliable sources even if someone writes them down in sincere belief? Of course not -- as we would need to accept as reality accounts of witchcraft that science now debunks and the validity of convictions for the 'crime' of witchcraft. So perhaps the stories of "Wolf of..." that identify wolves as man-eaters in medieval times are not valid. Pbrower2a (talk) 14:47, 17 October 2018 (UTC)

wolf paw[edit]

wolf paw can be as big as a male human hand — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:15, 17 October 2018 (UTC)

About the length wolf howling can carry[edit]

The article mentions wolf howls being heard to an area of even 130 km square kilometers. That would mean to an average radius of just little over ten kilometers or some seven miles. And that sounds a bit silly, because in good conditions, for example in the mountains, voice can carry really far. Ten kilometers would be maybe like closer to average hearing distance. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:14BB:81:A198:8809:E6CA:8B17:A937 (talk) 21:05, 18 October 2018 (UTC)

About the length wolf howling can carry part 2[edit]

One could counter my arguments by claiming that as the energy carried is proportional to distance the average are must be about the same every time. However the energy spread is proportional to the VOLUME created by the radius r from the howling spot. Thus one can understand that in some situation more of the energy carried by the sound waves spreads to greater AREA, when the situations are so that not so much of it spreads to up the space and not on the surface of earth. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2001:14BB:81:A198:90F3:29FA:DECB:7C43 (talk) 19:17, 19 October 2018 (UTC)

You have not provided any arguments; you have stated a piece of personal conjecture. Wikipedia requires that editors be able to WP:CITE expert WP:RELIABLE sources which other editors can WP:VERIFY. In this instance, 130 square kilometres is supported by Paquet, P. & Carbyn, L. W. (2003). "Gray wolf Canis lupus and allies", in Feldhamer, George A. et al. Wild Mammals of North America: Biology, Management, and Conservation, JHU Press, pp. 482-510. If you can do the same for your view, we will be happy to include it. William Harris • (talk) • 09:40, 31 October 2018 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 7 December 2018[edit]

Change map of wolf range to include northern Michigan, northern, Wisconsin, and northeast Minnesota in "Present" range. (talk) 21:23, 7 December 2018 (UTC)

I have added a "needs update" template to the image caption. I am also pinging Mariomassone, who created the image, to see if they would be willing to update the image. – Jonesey95 (talk) 21:49, 7 December 2018 (UTC)
I reverted to an earlier version of the file. It appears in his changing the file to include borders of subdivisions, such as states and provinces, Mario made many errors in the current range, including the aforementioned parts around the upper Great Lakes. Notably, this includes Minnesota, the only state other than Alaska to never have wolves fully extirpated, a fact commemorated in the name of their NBA team! The only explanation I can think of (besides good faith if careless error) is the idea that C. lupus lycaon was possibly a different species, though that's pretty strongly disproven now. oknazevad (talk) 03:31, 8 December 2018 (UTC)
The Minnesota Timberwolves - we "foreigners" never knew that. William Harris • (talk) • 07:29, 13 December 2018 (UTC)

Wolf Range Map[edit]

The map of wolf distribution in Greece is very off. Wolves in Greece live in Thrace, some parts of Macedonia, Epirus, very western Thessaly, Aetoloakarnania, Phocis and Boeotia (in the reservation site of Parnassus). My village is there and wolf attacks have been a common thing, especially this past few years. Please, fix the map. The previous one was more accurate. User: Kuniskos 14 December 2018

Thanks for sharing this information. It might be better placed over on Talk:List of gray wolf populations by country, along with a WP:RELIABLE source to support it. William Harris • (talk) • 10:47, 17 December 2018 (UTC)

Size chart request[edit]

Hi, I haven't been able to find a page dedicated to requesting size charts for extant mammalia (comparable to the paleobiology one), so I thought I'd try it here.

Would it be possible to make a size chart of the grey wolf, golden jackal and red fox using these three images as templates? Wolf, Jackal and Fox. Something similar to THIS maybe?

Obviously, the image will be very eurocentric, but I may get around to projecting one for North America and Africa.

Anyway, the shoulder heights are:
Grey wolf = 85 cm
Golden jackal = 50 cm
Red fox = 50 cm

Sorry in advance if this is the wrong place to ask, but I did try to find a more appropriate venue Mariomassone (talk) 16:13, 16 December 2018 (UTC)

Hello M, you might approach our joint paleo-colleague Funkmonk; he did some splendid work for me on Beringian wolf#Description running up to its FA review. If he cannot produce it, he may know somebody among the "dino-crew" who can. William Harris • (talk) • 10:23, 17 December 2018 (UTC)
Hi @FunkMonk:, what do you think? If you don't have the time, could you tell me what program you use? Mariomassone (talk) 11:30, 17 December 2018 (UTC)
A few images of exant animals have actually been done at WP:paleoart, so I'm sure someone there would be happy to do it. As for myself, I'm not much of a diagram guy, I use Photoshot, whereas something like Adobe Illustrator would probably be best. FunkMonk (talk) 15:36, 17 December 2018 (UTC)

/* Wolf distribution in Greece */[edit]

Alright, so I have returned after bringing evidence that the distribution of wolves in Greece is wrong. The map merely shows them in a part of Macedonia, when in fact, most wolves in Greece live in the midlands, on the mountains of the Pindos mountain range and have never gone extinct from those mountains. I will provide a research on the wolf distribution in Greece conducted by the EU.

Semi-protected edit request on 22 January 2019[edit]

Befor, on the wikipedia page of "Gray Wolf" The Shoulder height was at 80-90 cm. please change it back 2A02:2F0B:A2FF:FFFF:0:0:6468:D135 (talk) 20:35, 22 January 2019 (UTC)

 Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. – Jonesey95 (talk) 07:52, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

Population structure[edit]

Anyone else think this section would benefit from a pair of maps indicating the distribution of Eurasian haplogroups and North American ecotypes? Mariomassone (talk) 14:11, 23 April 2019 (UTC)

Hello M. The 6 North American ecotypes would be valuable and Schweizer provides an excellent map for you to replicate. It would help to highlight the separate existence of the northwestern "coastal wolves", which is becoming topical in wolf conservation circles as the "mountain wolves" commence their inroads into the coast-lands. At the Pleistocene/Holocene boundary, these coastal-adapted wolves may have stretched along the coast from British Columbia across coastal Beringia to Hokkaido - their cousin is the now extinct Ezo wolf (Hokkaido wolf) which did not originate from that island.
I believe that a map of the Eurasian haplotypes is a bit early just yet; I am sure that further research will reveal these to fall under ecotypes as well, rather than within national boundaries or geographic regions. William Harris • (talk) • 10:21, 6 May 2019 (UTC)

Usage of extinct[edit]

Since wolves as a species didn't actually become extinct but were killed/relocated in specific regions, the usage of "extinct" throughout the article is misleading. I've tried to think about how it might be rewritten to reflect this, but I'm stuck whn it comes to actually doing so. Clovermoss (talk) 23:00, 23 April 2019 (UTC)

My understanding is that the word "extirpated" is the correct term. William Harris • (talk) • 00:42, 3 May 2019 (UTC)
Yes, though "locally extinct" is probably better in a source for a general audience. Adrian J. Hunter(talkcontribs) 03:53, 3 May 2019 (UTC)
@William Harris: @Adrian J. Hunter: So, "extirpated" or "locally extinct"? I also think locally extinct would be better for a general audience, but I'm willing to keep an open mind. Clovermoss (talk) 21:34, 3 May 2019 (UTC)
I assume that this matter relates to the "Range and conservation" section of the article. I thought that you had an issue with the word "extinct" - these wolves did not disappear due to climate change or loss of prey. If the word "extirpated" is not in general usage, then why not use a similar word that is in general usage and call this for what it is - these wolves were "exterminated" by humans. It is not Wikipedia's role to sugar-coat the facts. William Harris • (talk) • 22:50, 3 May 2019 (UTC)
I just looked at each instance of "extinct" in the article, and actually, I'm not sure there's a problem. My biology textbook (Campbell Biology, 10th ed, 2015) says that "extinction" can be local or global, implicitly condoning the use of "extinct" when a species still exists elsewhere. All the uses in the article make it clear that it's local extinction being referred to. (And in the case of Japanese wolves, it seems correct to say that particular population/subtype of wolves genuinely is extinct.) I'm not really seeing sugar-coating as Range and conservation mentions "deliberate human persecution" in the second sentence. The bit about wolves in Switzerland sounds vague and could be changed to "exterminated" if appropriate, but I can't read the cited source. Adrian J. Hunter(talkcontribs) 11:42, 4 May 2019 (UTC)
@William Harris: I wasn't trying to "sugar coat" it, I just thought more people would understand what locally extinct was compared to expirated, since a lot of people are interested in wolves. @Adrian J. Hunter: I agree that it's fairly implicit in the article that it is local, but the current extinct article states that "extinction is generally considered to be the death of the last indvidual of the species", which is the reason I wanted to discuss this on the talk page because I thought that that made the current usage of extinct in the article misleading. Basically, I think that the article should be correct when it comes to what words actually mean, but I don't want that technical usage to be confusing. Clovermoss (talk) 15:33, 4 May 2019 (UTC)
I was not implying that you were; this article has preferred the use of the word "extinct" rather than the more correct "exterminated" long before you raised the issue in this section. William Harris • (talk) • 21:51, 4 May 2019 (UTC)

My 2¢: we should use the correct term, which is extirpated. Yes, it's a less common term than "extinct", but it's not ambiguous or possibly incorrect in meaning and with a link it's easily explained for the unfamiliar. It's just clearer to use. oknazevad (talk) 22:00, 4 May 2019 (UTC)

I question your assertion that the correct word is "extirpated", you have definitely not made the case for that. "Extinct" is not the best choice either as it immplies the loss of the species and not just local absence. Mediatech492 (talk) 15:34, 5 May 2019 (UTC)
Well, it is the very definition of "extirpated". What I'm saying is that the term is unambiguous and therefore a better choice than "extinct", which has both local and global meanings that are too easily confused, especially since the global meaning is the common understanding. Why not use an unambiguous term when one is available to us? After all, that is the exact question that prompted this discussion inthe first place. oknazevad (talk) 16:51, 5 May 2019 (UTC)
Is it? Correct perhaps that is arguable; but unambiguous, no not really. It's tough to make an argument for common understanding for a word that is well outside common usage, much less as you claim: "global meaning". Mediatech492 (talk) 18:32, 5 May 2019 (UTC)
I really do not understand what you are arguing here. Like, at all. I don't think you understood me. I'm saying that "extinction" is ambiguous because a species can be extinct at a local level, or it can be globally extinct; the latter is the common understanding of the term amongst laypeople. That's what I mean by "global understanding" – that the common understanding of "extinct" means the species has been completely lost worldwide. "Extripation", although not as commonly used word among the general public, is unambiguous because it can only refer to a partial absence. Your posts read as though you seem to think the opposite is true, that "extirpated" refers to a global loss. Indeed, I'm completely puzzled by your responses, as I think you may be failing to comprehend what I'm actually saying. oknazevad (talk) 00:26, 6 May 2019 (UTC)
  • Extirpation: "The bringing of a species to extinction within a part of its range" (Oxford Dictionary of Ecology). Srnec (talk) 23:54, 5 May 2019 (UTC)
One thing that I do expect from our readers is the ability to speak English; this is the English-speaking version of Wikipedia. If they can handle "extant" then they can also handle "extirpated". Else, I would refer them to the "Simple Wikipedia": William Harris • (talk) • 09:24, 6 May 2019 (UTC)

Good Article status re-validation[edit]

Back in 2005, Gray wolf was promoted to the prestigious Featured Article status, the first within genus Canis. Her tracks were followed in 2007 by the Beagle. In 2009, Gray wolf lost its FA status. In 2011, the Australian Cattle dog gained FA status, and in 2012 User:LittleJerry was able to achieve a Good Article status for Gray wolf. For the next 5 years things remained the same with FA status being held only by the 2 dogs.

In 2017, the Gray wolf's two extinct sisters the Dire wolf and the Beringian wolf claimed FA status on behalf of the wolves, matching the two dogs. Later in the same year, Golden jackal became the only wild extant Canis at FA level. A decade has now passed since Gray wolf's demotion from FA, and it is now time to regain her lost crown.

Back in 2016, an interested group of Gray wolf editors formed together as a project team to reduce the article's size from 200kb down to 150kb, demonstrating what can be done when the wolf-pack works together. Perhaps we can do something similar once again.

As a first stage, we intend to ensure that as of 2019, the Wolf article is at least at the GA level that it was awarded back in 2011. This will entail some changes being made shortly. I have set out the proposed works below so that other editors know what the plan is and there are no surprises. We would be pleased if other editors could join us in this undertaking.

Status Editor Contributions proposed
 Done William Harris Structure: Golden jackal is the only wild extant Canis at FA level that was achieved less than 2 years ago. Therefore, the structure for Wolf should follow it as much as possible. Else, we could take a well respected reference on Wolves (perhaps Dave Mech, or Mech & Boitani) and replicate the structure of that book, which may reveal some gaps in what needs to be included in a thorough coverage of the wolf, and what is currently included that might not.
 Done William Harris Size: At 172kb Wolf is way WP:TOOBIG. "Too wordy" was one of the criticisms summarised at its loss of FA status. Our target size will be towards 120kb - that would allow 80kb for the article's content plus 40kb for references, which would bring it down to the size that it was when it achieved GA in 2012 (122kb), and around the same size as Golden Jackal (and with both being a little larger than Dire wolf and Beringian wolf). The highly important - and growing in public interest - section on Conservation is 34kb by itself and warrants a WP:SPINOFF into its own article. Another editor may have an interest in then combining it with the List of gray wolf population by countries to make a very fine article, as they are both on the same theme.

If an editor has an interest in wolf conservation and would like to create the new spinoff article please let me know either here or on my Talk page.

Pending William Harris Size part 2: Back in 2016, I reduced Dog in size noticeably by moving material back to its various contributing articles, and later as a group we had limited success with Wolf because it does not have as many other contributing articles to relocate back to. One section we do have is Hybridisation with other Canis - we currently have 7.3kb on a topic that is not about the wolf but about the hybrid offspring that no longer bear its name. A section is warranted, but not this undue amount. There are other sections under Relationships with humans where much content could be moved back to the contributing article, as they are detracting from the main topic - the wolf. At 20k, Relationships with humans might be WP:SPINOFF, and along with Conservation would deliver a size reduction of 55k (then we would need to add back some kb with two short sections that introduce these topics in the main article).

If other editors have an opinion on this we would be pleased to hear it.

 Done LittleJerry Graphics: All need to be re-validated for legality. Some may not be illustrating the topic and need replacement or removal.
Pending William Harris Copyright violations, broken links to articles - a scan by the two relevant pieces of software to rectify.
clock In progress LittleJerry Lack of "Sourcing", and use of "more journal refs" - two points of the criticisms summarised at Gray wolf's loss of FA status. To be rectified, with Citation bot run as often as needed.

If other editors would like to assist please contact LittleJerry either here or on his Talk page.

We now initiate the GA re-validation. William HarrisCanis lupis track.svgtalkCanis lupis track.svg 08:20, 12 July 2019 (UTC)