I'm confused.

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TheOnlyTherian
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I'm confused.

Post by TheOnlyTherian » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:25 pm

Is there ranks in a wolf pack?

Because how I view a wolf pack is like:

Alphas (Parents)
Beta (Second-in-command)
Off-Springs (Pups)
Subordinates (Wolves out of the family)
Omega

I don't believe in like the warrior, hunter and so on forth. Because I know that the whole pack does guard their territory, hunt, care for the pups and so on. I know that only the breeding pair can have pups, if the other wolf wants to have a pup, they would have to leave the pack to find their own mate and start a pack.
That's how WolfQuest teaches us?

I know wolves more then any other animal I have in favorite. I have books about wolves that also mentions about ranks but not like those fantasy/roleplay types.
Everyone has their views on ranks.
If you think I am wrong, link me to a 100% true site to proof it. Because the books I have are by Jim Dutcher, Shaun, and other wolf experts.

I also know that packs are so-called a family but people keep changing the views of pack ranks and it makes me so confused.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by Koa » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:38 pm

Moved to Wolf Q&A.

You are partially wrong. The term alpha and some subsequent ranks are only applicable to captive wolf packs (as they often consist of unrelated animals roughly thrown together) and large packs with multiple breeders. Your typical, wild wolf pack and its social dynamics are not accurately explained by ranks as they operate more like a family and, because of their generally vanilla composition, have no need for strict, established order. The thread below tells you all you need to know and contains quotes straight from Dr. L David Mech, a renowned wolf biologist whom the WolfQuest development team consulted. He asserts the same point I made above-- that we should reserve the term "alpha" at least for dominant animals in captive packs and packs consisting of multiple breeders.
http://www.wolfquest.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=942

I suggest you read his study, as well.
http://www.mnforsustain.org/wolf_mech_d ... status.htm

Indeed, people's views differ with nuance among research circles but those are the basics.

If by "Shaun" you are referring to Shaun Ellis, he is neither a reliable source, nor a wolf expert (of the same calibur as Dr. Mech). http://wolfquest.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f ... s#p2112845
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by TheOnlyTherian » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:20 pm

Koa wrote:Moved to Wolf Q&A.

You are partially wrong. The term alpha and some subsequent ranks are only applicable to captive wolf packs (as they often consist of unrelated animals roughly thrown together) and large packs with multiple breeders. Your typical, wild wolf pack and its social dynamics are not accurately explained by ranks as they operate more like a family and, because of their generally vanilla composition, have no need for strict, established order. The thread below tells you all you need to know and contains quotes straight from Dr. L David Mech, a renowned wolf biologist whom the WolfQuest development team consulted. He asserts the same point I made above-- that we should reserve the term "alpha" at least for dominant animals in captive packs and packs consisting of multiple breeders.
http://www.wolfquest.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=942

I suggest you read his study, as well.
http://www.mnforsustain.org/wolf_mech_d ... status.htm

Indeed, people's views differ with nuance among research circles but those are the basics.

If by "Shaun" you are referring to Shaun Ellis, he is neither a reliable source, nor a wolf expert (of the same calibur as Dr. Mech). http://wolfquest.org/bb/viewtopic.php?f ... s#p2112845
I spoke to one of the members of the Facebook WQ group. I have learned that the pack isn't really like how I thought and it all makes sense. A pack is a family, a generation of the parents (Alphas) and the offspring than the rest of the family. Like grandfathers/mothers and so forth. Outsiders (Lone wolves) are rarely accepted to the pack and so that is why WolfQuest teaches in the game that the lone wolf must make a pack (Family).

I have one Shaun Ellis book and other one coming by post, why isn't he a reliable source? He has lived with wolves, studied them and actually lived with them.
I also read some of the posts that you linked about Ellis, I mean, I haven't yet read his books but I guess everyone has their views. I have the book I have by him called, "Wolves: Capturing the natural spirit of these incredible animals". It's an amazing book with beautiful and jaw-dropping photographs of the wolves. It's a must see if you haven't already have the book.
One point to declare the link you gave me about Ellis, someone said that he makes it out that wolves are perfect and stuff. Which is true, of course, but again they are just like any other animal in this world.
I don't have any books by L. David Mech but I will someday. If you do have any books by him, which one do you recommend?
Last edited by TheOnlyTherian on Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by Koa » Sun Dec 24, 2017 5:56 pm

The main problem with Ellis is that he has used his "studies" of captive wolves and the wolves he has lived with and passes off his "research" as something applicable to all wolves, including wild ones. He himself perpetuates the issue of wolf hierarchy. Unlike Mech, he does not have the scientific accolades or the education to do otherwise.

A good book of Mech's to start out with is Wolves: Behavior, Ecology and Conservation.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by TheOnlyTherian » Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:57 pm

Koa wrote:The main problem with Ellis is that he has used his "studies" of captive wolves and the wolves he has lived with and passes off his "research" as something applicable to all wolves, including wild ones. He himself perpetuates the issue of wolf hierarchy. Unlike Mech, he does not have the scientific accolades or the education to do otherwise.

A good book of Mech's to start out with is Wolves: Behavior, Ecology and Conservation.
Yes, that does make sense about Ellis. Captive wolves are quite different from wild wolves. But that doesn't make Ellis a bad wolf person. I still love his wolf book by him that I have. I also can't wait for the one that is coming by post. Everyone has different views about Ellis.

I just look that book up by Mech, it seems very good. I will be saving up my money for it and soon will buy it! Thanks.
By the way, what do you think of my view about the ranks? Is that right? I am still learning about wolves even tho I've loved them since I was 12-13 years old! :P :wolf:

Guess you still learn new things or even better from what you learned before, even though you love a certain animal for years! :)
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by Koa » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:23 pm

As I explained before, you are partially right. Ranks are best kept for captive wolves and large packs consisting of multiple breeders.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by TheOnlyTherian » Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:34 pm

Koa wrote:As I explained before, you are partially right. Ranks are best kept for captive wolves and large packs consisting of multiple breeders.
No, I meant here.

"I spoke to one of the members of the Facebook WQ group. I have learned that the pack isn't really like how I thought and it all makes sense. A pack is a family, a generation of the parents (Alphas) and the offspring than the rest of the family. Like grandfathers/mothers and so forth. Outsiders (Lone wolves) are rarely accepted to the pack and so that is why WolfQuest teaches in the game that the lone wolf must make a pack (Family). "

Also, one thing I don't understand about the wolf family. What is really the omega? Wolves use them like stress toys but highly respect Omegas. Omegas are like the upkeep to help keep the pack together.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by Koa » Sun Dec 24, 2017 10:38 pm

Oh. So I'd say you are correct except for your use of alpha; again, alpha is generally reserved for dominant wolves of captive packs or the dominant breeders in multibreeder packs.

Omegas are the lowest animal in the hierarchy scale. In captive or multibreeder situations, they may have more trouble than others at securing food from an animal that a pack has felled. They may not necessarily be the weakest animal; they may be simply inexperienced.
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by TheOnlyTherian » Mon Dec 25, 2017 11:29 am

Koa wrote:Oh. So I'd say you are correct except for your use of alpha; again, alpha is generally reserved for dominant wolves of captive packs or the dominant breeders in multibreeder packs.

Omegas are the lowest animal in the hierarchy scale. In captive or multibreeder situations, they may have more trouble than others at securing food from an animal that a pack has felled. They may not necessarily be the weakest animal; they may be simply inexperienced.
I like the word, Alpha. It's easier for me to identify the parents or so-called leaders of the pack. But for the correct term, it's called the "Breeding pair".
So Omegas are part of the family then? Just they are yet not to be experienced?
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Re: I'm confused.

Post by Koa » Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:57 pm

TheOnlyTherian wrote:
Koa wrote:Oh. So I'd say you are correct except for your use of alpha; again, alpha is generally reserved for dominant wolves of captive packs or the dominant breeders in multibreeder packs.

Omegas are the lowest animal in the hierarchy scale. In captive or multibreeder situations, they may have more trouble than others at securing food from an animal that a pack has felled. They may not necessarily be the weakest animal; they may be simply inexperienced.
I like the word, Alpha. It's easier for me to identify the parents or so-called leaders of the pack. But for the correct term, it's called the "Breeding pair".
So Omegas are part of the family then? Just they are yet not to be experienced?
The correct term is breeding pair or dominant pair, yes.

They could be a part of the family in a multibreeder pack but it would depend on the composition of the pack I suppose. Since captive packs are generally composed of unrelated animals, they wouldn't really be a part of a family since there is no family to begin with. Omegas can be weak wolves or inexperienced wolves or passive wolves. It depends, really.
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