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Wolves in Saskatchewan


Wolves are common in the forested parts of Saskatchewan, especially where there is little human activity to interfere with them. They are well adapted to a wide range of habitats – from grasslands to meadows to aspen parkland and boreal forest – wherever large prey animals are found.

In nature, wolves help keep other animals from becoming too numerous. This, in turn, helps to ensure that wildlife habitat remains healthy and plentiful. Wolves are more successful killing large animals that are less fit, injured or inexperienced. This helps future generations of prey remain strong, healthy and better able to withstand predators, disease and injury.

The likelihood of a wolf attacking a person is extremely low. There has only been one documented fatal wolf attack in North America. In recent decades, the huge increase in human use of wilderness for recreation and industry has brought more people into contact with wolves. Our frequent use of wilderness and habit of leaving behind food scraps and related garbage has become an attraction for wolves and other predators that has led them to habituate to humans.

Wolves can compete with people for some kinds of large animals that we hunt, and they also sometimes kill livestock.

If you encounter a wolf

  • Stay away from known den or kill sites and areas where wolves have frequently been seen or have become habituated to humans.
  • Be observant – watch for fresh tracks and droppings. Listen for howling. Travel in pairs or groups where an encounter might be likely, and avoid travelling at night.
  • Make frequent noise to warn wolves of your presence. This will give them time to move away.
  • Keep all locations of permanent or temporary human occupancy free of accessible garbage. This includes campsites and picnic areas.
  • Keep your campsite clean. Cook and store food away from sleeping areas.
  • Dogs may attract wolves and instigate aggressive behaviour. Keep dogs on a leash when hiking or walking in areas where wolves may be present.
  • Never feed wolves or try to attract them for a better view. A wolf is a large predator and is capable of taking down prey much larger than a human. Wolves must be treated with respect.

If a wolf approaches

  • When you encounter a wolf, do not run or turn your back on it and do not approach or chase it.
  • Face the wolf, stand tall, raise your arms to increase your stature and keep your eyes on it. Wolves, like dogs, do not like to be stared at. This will help discourage a possible encounter.
  • Look for an open area, if necessary, and move to it. Wolves like to use concealment to approach.

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