National Geographic: Prehistoric Predators: Dire Wolves
You're welcome to rent it somewhere and watch it. It's really good, and contains additional Grey Wolf hunting information.
This thread is to assist others with the new User Writings rule we have. (Dire wolves are now allowed to be written about.) However, those stories must still follow the following information. All other information not listed I either didn't deem important, or isn't known. But most aspects are similar to the Grey Wolf.
EDIT: Corrections have been made by Crocotto:
Dire wolves were the underdogs of Ice age North America. Even in large packs they often lost prey too larger carnivores, especially the Giant Short Faced bear. This is most evident in nearly a quarter of all injuries found on Dire Wolf fossils match up with evidence of a bear attack.
They were anything BUT the alpha carnivore of the Ice Age, unlike what you and History Channel say
Lastly, there is absolutely zero evidence dire wolves predated on any species of mammoth or mastodon. Even the calves were just too big for them. The only predators any North American elephantine has was the Giant Short Faced bear* (who was a legitimate hunter, another victim of history channel's inaccuracy), Smiley (calves only), and humans
The episode also neglects to state the dire "wolves's" relation. It continues to paint the false image that Dires are just over sized Gray Wolves; instead of stating the true fact that the dire "wolf" is really a Dire Coyote, as the American Coyote is it's closest living relative
*Giant Short Faced Bear:
The idea this animal was a pure scavenger is pure idiocy at it's best. The ONLY pure scavengers in the world are Vultures, and only they can afford to because they are not very big, and can fly.
The idea a super carnivore could use the same strategy is rooted in no fact, and in pure, outdated speculation.
-Need more food
- and can't move very fast (relatively speaking)
I've seen the same happen to Tyrannosaurus, despite mountains of evidence of live hunting
Do you think a T-rex could live off of scraps from a dromeosaur kill? Nope
Do you think a Uber-Bear could last the Ice-Age off of the scrap wolves left him? Nope
History Channel is a HORRIBLE paleontology network. They exaggerate, make up 'facts', and often leave stuff out.
Size: Around 2 meters long, 1 meter high, and averaged 70kg. With the males weighing more than the females.
Era that they lived: Ice age.
Other important atonomy information:
- Much larger teeth and jaw. Teeth often broke and shattered due to the gnawing of bones.
- Similar to that of the Grey Wolf; but there are key differences.
- Hunted in packs of 30 or more.
- Able to kill prey 10x its size.
- Able to fight off much larger predators like the Saber Tooth cat and the Short-faced bear.
- Often died in sticky tar pits while hunting prey. (Dehydration, starvation)
- Dominant killer in the ice age.
- More Dire Wolves than Grey Wolves; and in a confrontation the Grey Wolves ran.
- Brought down prey by weight and jaws.
- Had stronger bite than Grey wolf
- Mostly hunted on Bison and Mammoth
- But hunts were still dangerous, with still a low hunt successful rate.
- Ate prey rapidly to avoid predator confrontation (within minutes.)
- When Dire Wolves are injured, some may carry food and nurture it. But others are not as cooperative and may abuse the animal.
- Pups were treated similarly to the Grey wolf's.
- The pups mostly did not start to hunt until 7-8 months.
- A lot of theories.
- Severe abrupt climate change - dire wolves could not adapt to warmer weather.
- Dire wolves met an unexpected abrupt end.
- Some people suggest this was caused by humans, who brought diseases and more competition for prey.
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