Thursday, March 4, 2010

The End of an Era


The Druid Pack, perhaps Yellowstone's most famous pack, is in danger of "fading away."




Wolves were exterminated from Yellowstone Park in the mid-1920’s. In the absence of natural predators, the elk population gradually increased over the next 70 years. In 1995 and 1996, Canadian gray wolves were transported from Canada to Yellowstone National Park with the expectation that the species would repopulate the sprawling landscape and restore balance in the the declining ecosystem. In 1996 a number of the wolves introduced to Yellowstone were related and five of these animals were released together. They were named the Druid Peak pack. Since the arrival of those first immigrants, wolves have thrived in Yellowstone — and none more dramatically than the Druids. It's been 14 years now and the Druids have been the subject of two feature length documentaries by National Geographic and thus inspiring people far beyond the boundaries of the park. The pack is now down to one wolf. It seems that an era has ended.

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2 comments:

Nick R. said...

There was a documentary about this on either PBS or Discovery Channel called the Wolves of Yellowstone that showed the dwindling Druid pack and the rise of a new stronger pack.

JacquƩline Roth said...

As a teacher, one of the nonfiction materials I use with my students each year is on the reintroduction of the wolves. It always sparks a great deal of conversation and interest on their part.