Friday, June 24, 2011

Magical Moment 505, "Howlin at the Moon"

My husband and I drove an hour and a half west to the Lakota Wolf Preserve in Warren County, NJ. Whenever we both have a day off at the same time (about once every 2 weeks!), we try and do something out of the ordinary and special. Eddie found this Wolf Preserve on the internet and we booked a Wolf Watch Tour. How cool is that?!

The Lakota Wolf Preserve cares for dozens of wolves, who for whatever reason, could not survive in the wild. They have Arctic, Timber, and Tundra wolves in an open habitat with plenty of space to be healthy and happy. On our wolf watch tour, we saw many of these animals, separated into their different packs by reinforced, double chain-linked fences. Since many of these were raised here since pups, they were not afraid to approach the humans on the other side of the fence. I have to admit, when I first saw these legendary, intimidating creatures walk towards us in a pack of 4 or 5, I tensed slightly. 

This preserve also conducts photography tours, where they remove sections of the chain link fence and you can get clear shots of the animals. They do their best to "pose" the wolves for optimum shots using meat. I learned that nearly every photograph of a wolf that you see, is taken at a preserve like this because wolves are frightfully elusive of humans when in the wild. If you're close enough to take a photo of a wolf, chances are, he smells you first and is gone before you even realize it. But for the coolest event of the day, you have to scroll to the very bottom and press play. I had goose bumps all over for about 5 minutes!




The main care-taker of these wolves, is an expert "wolf-caller" and with just one of his howls, he conjured up a reply from all of the packs. He explained that each howl is different, and he can recognize nearly every single one, and tell you the name of the wolf it came from. The wolves recognize his howl too, and that's why they answer him. I listened in amazement. I've never heard anything like it, but it made me want to try my own howl out...maybe on the next full moon!

13 comments:

texwisgirl said...

oh isn't that magical! sounds like they are all happy and well-tended. love their serenade!

Busy Bee Suz said...

Aren't they beautiful and mystical creatures????
I love them (and I'm scared of them!) I am thankful for good people who understand and help them when they need it.
We have a wolf sanctuary about a mile and a half from our house. (yes, we live in the woods) and I hear them in the early morning and some nights....just howling away. A beautiful sound really...or is that just me???
XOXOXO
Suz

Kim @ Stuff could... said...

This is neat! They look like dogs but I should know that?

Linda said...

I loved this, Elizabeth. There is a wolf park two or three hours away from us, and we've talked many times about going over to see them. Your post really gets us in the mood to make that trip. The video was great. If we go for one of their "howl nights" I must remember to shoot video footage. :)

Elizabeth Grimes said...

Texwisgirl, that was the first time I heard anything like that. I was amazed!

Suz, how neat! You get to hear them all the time! Have you ever visited the sanctuary?

Kim, they are no bigger than most pet dogs. Seems like I could just walk right up and pet one...probably not the greatest idea though!

Elizabeth Grimes said...

Linda, you definitely should! I never knew this place existed, or we probably would have gone sooner.

Rick said...

How cool was that ! You missed your opportunity for this month but the next full moon is only 3 weeks away ;-)

We are surrounded by coyotes and most evenings we're serenaded by their yelps and howls. Sometimes a bit unsettling on a warm summer evening when it really sounds like they're just outside the back door. We have regular sightings during the day. Not sure if there are wolves around here - there used to be a bounty on them.

Deborah said...

Oh my goodness, that made me tingle ... just wonderful!

Jenny Woolf said...

We used to hear the wolves howling at night from London Zoo when we lived nearby. It was strange!

Elizabeth Grimes said...

Three weeks? I'll mark it on my calendar! :) I wonder if the coyotes chased the wolves off their territory. Hmmm.

Deborah, glad you enjoyed it! I was tingling too. :)

Jenny, that sounds amazing! Thanks for reading and commenting!

ds said...

A different kind of music altogether. And beautiful. Thank you.

laughwithusblog said...

Sounds like fun! I wanna go!

Joyce Gannucci said...

Very interesting! You captured some very cool & eerie sounds of the white one howling!!! Great photos too Elizabeth! :-)