African wolf discovery in Morocco

This video is about wolves.

From Wildlife Extra:

African wolf found in Morocco for the first time

Camera trap photos from the Middle Atlas reveal a wolf

September 2012. A group of Spanish-Moroccan researchers has announced the discovery of the African Wolf (Canis lupus lupaster) in the Middle Atlas Mountains of Morocco. The team leader, Vicente Urios, from the University of Alicante says it is “a fabulous find”. The wolves were photographed by camera trap in 2011.

The researchers discovered from the Berbers that inhabit that they knew of two types of “jackals”, one large and one small. Vicente Urios’s team guessed that the largest would actually be a wolf. “They even have a word for wolf, but they always thought the animals were jackals” says Urios.

The photographs show an animal with “obvious wolf characteristics, such as a large body, slender, with a powerful neck, tall individuals with darker mantle and short tail.” The photo is taken in the Atlas at about 1,800 metres.

Much larger distribution than previously thought

This discovery extends the known distribution area of the African Wolf (Canis lupus lupaster) westwards by more than 3000 Km to north-west Africa.

African wolf also in north-eastern Algeria and Senegal

An article published in PLoS ONE by Gaubert et al. on 10 August 2012 shed more light on the African Wolf Canis lupus lupaster in North and West Africa and put forward its uniqueness among other wolf lineages:

The African wolf appeared as a distinct genetic entity. Genetic distances with the other wolf lineages ranged between 1.9 and 4.3%, whereas they reached 4.5 to 9.3% between the African wolf and the different lineages of jackals. The uniqueness of the African wolf was reinforced by the fact that it had the highest level of haplotype and nucleotide diversity among gray wolf lineages, even exceeding that of the Holarctic wolves and dogs, and far greater than what was found for the Himalayan and Indian wolves.

It is most likely that C. l. lupaster has been roaming in Africa since (at least) the Middle to Late Pleistocene, and that the African wolf and a cline of smaller morphotypes, traditionally defined as ‘golden jackals’, have been co-occurring in Africa since that period, without any clear morphological, temporal or ecological delineation (Geraads 2011).

The full report of this discovery will be published in the September issue of the Quercus magazine: “Detectanal lobo en Marruecos gracias al uso del foto-trampeo” by Vicente Urios, Carlos Ramírez, Miguel Gallardo and Hamid Rguibi Idrissi.

September 2012. “Don’t let our wolves become homeless” is a campaign to raise money to buy the 17-hectare site on which the Iberian Wolf Recovery Centre (IWRC) has stood for the last 25 years: here.

Mange and viral diseases have a substantial, recurring impact on the health and size of reintroduced wolf packs living in Yellowstone National Park, according to ecologists: here.

September 2012. The U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service is requesting assistance with an investigation involving the suspected illegal take of a radio-collared red wolf that was recently found dead. The red wolf is protected under The Endangered Species Act: here.

8 thoughts on “African wolf discovery in Morocco

  1. Pingback: ‘Dogs unfit as pets’ | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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  4. Pingback: Wolves learning from humans, new research | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: New golden jackal species discovery in Africa | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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