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Gray Wolf

The wolf is the largest member of the dog family. It is a very powerful animal and has great endurance. It is usually grayish or brownish, however in Arctic regions it is white, and in parts of North America it is black. Color and size of the wolf vary greatly in the different regions of its range. The wolf is about four and a half feet long with a twelve to eighteen inch bushy tail. It weighs from anywhere 40 to 170 pounds. They have strong jaws with sharp teeth, including their long canine teeth that can tear flesh. They have excellent eyesight, sharp hearing, and a very keen sense of smell. Wolves howl as a signal to other wolves, telling of the beginning and ending of a hunt, of a wolf separated from its pack, as a warning to other wolf packs, and sometimes just for fun.
The Gray Wolf, also known as the Timber Wolf, tends to live in packs of 5 to 15 individuals based around a dominant pair of wolves. The leader of the pack is called the Alpha. Wolves hunts in their packs, the preferred prey being large herbivores such as elk, deer, bison, and mountain sheep, but it will also take smaller game, most commonly beaver and domestic animals. When food is scarce, they will eat smaller things such as mice. Nearly extinct, the gray wolf is now only found in Alaska, Minnesota, Michigan, and Wisconsin.
Usually only one female per pack reproduces. Mating usually occurs once a year in January or February, with gestation lasting about two months, after which four to seven cubs are born. The den is usually in a hole in the ground or a crevice in some rocks, and is often used year after year. Within 3 to 5 months the young pups are able to travel with the pack. During the time when the alpha female has her pups in the den, the pack stays in one place. Other than that, they are always on the move.
Gray wolves may live up to thirteen years in the wild, although the average life span is five to six years. Some wolves that are held in captivity…

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