What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

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MistyWolf10101
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What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

Post by MistyWolf10101 » Wed Jul 02, 2014 12:32 pm

I've been wondering, if one of the parents of a wolf pack dies, what do the other wolves do? Do they all disperse, or does another wolf take their place?
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Re: What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

Post by Radioactive Rabbit » Wed Jul 02, 2014 5:15 pm

Well, if an Alpha male were to die, The oldest or most dominant heir in the litter would take over and provide for the family, However only if the Pups were at least a year old. The mothers would care and hunt by herself, and she might just have to bring her pups with her on the hunt. That has happened before.

If an Alpha female were to die, The male would continue to care for his young until they would disperse. Then, after his children leave him, he would most likely turn into a loner, jumping through packs until he meets his death.
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Re: What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

Post by BlackWarrior » Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:16 pm

Although Radioactive Rabbit's response is fairly accurate, I would note that the term 'Alpha' is outdated and inaccurate when referring to wild wolves, and is more often used to describe the dynamics of captive wolf packs. Wild wolf pack's consist of the dominant breeding pair and most often, their offspring. The fate of the pack isn't dependant on the gender of the passing wolf; but whether it was one member of the dominant pair, or both.

As a start, this topic may answer your question. It was a topic prior to this one asking a similar question:
http://www.wolfquest.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=63271

Generally, if one of the dominant members die, whether it be the female or male, another family member may ultimately step up into place (though unlikely due to interbreeding possibilities) . This situation is sometimes seen to bring in a different unrelated wolf that possesses the desirable traits required by the pack. These sorts of situations are immensely stressful for a wolf pack and can sometimes lead to its member's dispersal.

Dispersal is more commonly the consequence of the death of the dominant pair, meaning both parents.
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Re: What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

Post by MistyWolf10101 » Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:06 pm

Thanks! I've been wondering that for a while.
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Re: What happens if one of the parent wolves die?

Post by BlackWarrior » Thu Jul 03, 2014 5:01 pm

MistyWolf10101 wrote:Thanks! I've been wondering that for a while.
No worries! Glad to have answered your question. Thanks, also, Radioactive Rabbit. ^^
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