Nira has remained
the alpha of the pack at Wolf Timbers. Some of you may wonder if
he has ever been tested by Ingo. The answer is, yes, but so far
Nira has been able to respond effectively to Ingo. This year's breeding
season came and went with no documented tying between Nira and Keeley.
Nira was a bit possessive of Keeley for about two weeks in mid-February.
Believe me when I say Nira was more interested in Keeley than food!
From this statement you can understand how intent Nira was on Keeley.
It was during this time period that Nira would not leave Keeley's
side - even when we entered the enclosure. Research at Wolf Park
has shown that there is a period of about one week when the female
produces a particular pheromone. Conception has a higher probability
of occurring if breeding takes place during this time. The research
has also shown that at this time the alpha male will guard and attend
the female preventing any other suitors near her. We could pretend
to examine him only if Keeley was also greeting us. Nira did not
even solicit belly rubs at this time. We could also say that Nira
displayed more interest towards us during this period, not in an
aggressive mood by any means but by not allowing "unsupervised"
visits between Keeley and us. This was the most intense that we
have seen him. We can all breath a sigh of "finally "
now that all has returned to pre-breeding season status. Nira has
been exhibiting an earnest desire to "get a game started "
with the other wolves by inviting the others to chase him. All is
well until Ingo ends up disobeying by doing something that Nira
sees but we are unable to notice. It is at this time, Nira will
discipline Ingo. Nira recently had a visitor in the form of his
puppy mother, Karen Davis. Karen helped raise Nira and Keeley from
their early puppyhood. This is how the wolves are socialized to
humans. The wolves remember Karen well, and are always excited when
she comes to visit. She usually ends up quite muddy and disheveled
from all the wolfie paws and kisses they give to her. Nira is now
eating like a . . .wolf. He looks very healthy and solid. His coat
is shiny, black and thick. The rich black of his coat is interlaced
with bits of white, especially around his muzzle. It gives him a
distinguished look. He has also begun to howl again for some unknown
reason. Nira did not howl during breeding season. We are not quite
sure why this occurred. Keeley and Ingo would often try to get him
to howl, waiting for the cue from him to start, but it wouldn't
come. The return of his howl is a welcome sound; just don't tell
him that he's a little tone deaf. Nira remains our easiest wolf
to read but he also has a more in depth character then the other
two wolves. He is an enigma, so to speak. Nira has once again returned
to his old tricks of pushing the planks over and observing all new
visitors inside the main enclosure with curious eyes. Being around
Nira, you can easily pick up on his reserved confidence - he knows
that he is the boss, but does not abuse his privilege. Keeley defers
to him from both a distance and up close while Ingo, as all teenagers
are wont to do, tests the waters a bit more. Nira and his friends
are the reason Wolf Timbers exists and we are privileged to be able
to care for him. As his sponsor, we encourage you to come and visit
as often as you like. Please feel free to call us to make an appointment
or just to see how he is doing. The 2001 season at Wolf Timbers
is going to be a great one! There are several new programs in place
and also a few howl nights have been added. Hope to see you sometime