We took our first trip down to the Wolf Conservation Center in South Salem NY this past Friday for an Easter egg hunt with Atka, their ambassador Arctic Wolf. The twist was the kids would hide the eggs, and Atka would get to hunt for them. No, the kids weren't in the enclosure at the same time as Atka. He was waiting impatiently in another area while they hid the goodies, and they left just before Atka was let back in.
Some eggs were just shells with the contents blown out, but others were hard boiled or raw. Atka seemed to figure out the whole thing pretty quickly, and it was clear he preferred the ones with delicious eggy goodness still inside.
We learned about the Wolf Conservation Center's work with federal programs for species survival for the rare Red Wolf, and about wolf behavior, habitats, and efforts to reintroduce wolves into the wild.
Our group was taken on a tour of the other areas of the center that house breeding pairs of Red Wolves and Mexican Grey Wolves. The Red Wolves were very shy of any human contact, but we did manage to see them in the distance as they checked us out from the safety of a stand of evergreens. With any luck, this pair will have puppies soon, as breeding season has passed and puppy season has arrived. So far, no signs of newbies, but updates can be found on the center's Facebook page.
The Grey Wolves were shy as well, but nosiness won out as the female came within 20 feet of the fence line to get a look at us. The male decided to make an appearance too, once he saw that deer antler treats were involved. Blurry pics due to fading light and not using a flash, but you get the gist.
The center offers a wide variety of programs onsite, for adults and children, and travel offsite with Atka for programs in schools and other organizations.
Wolf Conservation Center