Social Network


DE: Wild wolves return to Germany after being almost extinct in 19th century

More than hundred packs of wild wolves were detected in Germany between 2018 and 2019, the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) and the federal agency Documentation and Advice Center on Wolves (DBBW) announced on Monday.

Beside the 105 wolf packs, 25 pairs of wolves and 13 single wolves were confirmed, according to German wildlife experts. In the previous monitoring period, only 77 packs, 40 pairs and 3 single wolves had been detected.

“The number of wolves in Germany is increasing”, said BfN president Beate Jessel. “In addition, individual territorial wolves could be detected for the first time in four federal states” in Germany.

Since the middle of the 19th century, wolves had been considered extinct in Germany. The year 2000 is commonly mentioned as the year of the return of the wolves in Germany because a pair of wild wolves with puppies was sighted.

According to BfN and DBBW, the number of animals per pack could “vary strongly” with an offspring of three to eleven animals. A typical wolf pack would consist of the two parents and usually the entire offspring of the last two years.

The minimum number of adult wolves in the confirmed territories in Germany was estimated between 275 and 301, the German wildlife associations noted.

Wild wolves in Germany are under special protection. However, the number of wolves found dead increased by 60 percent compared to the previous year, the associations found. More than half of the 83 wolves killed in traffic accidents in Germany had been puppies.

Close cooperation between the German government and the federal states would make it possible to publish verified figures on the population and occurrence of wolves. “These data are the central condition for an objective debate in dealing with wolves,” said Jessel.