Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

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elkhunter123456
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Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

Post by elkhunter123456 » Tue Mar 05, 2019 3:16 pm

Do wolves ever eat snakes or lizards?
Have snakes ever killed wolves or vice-versa?
Will wolves eat snake eggs?
Would a snake eat a dead wolf?

Feel free to put any other info about wolves and reptiles!
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Re: Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

Post by valkea » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:45 pm

I can't answer your more wolf-based questions with complete certainty, but I can answer some snake ones. There have almost definitely been snakes that have been killed by wolves in Yellowstone, that's a pretty basic interaction. Snakes killing wolves, however, is less likely as most species in Yellowstone appear to be non-venomous with the exception of the prairie rattlesnake. I'm not sure how strong their venom is, but I wouldn't be surprised if it could kill a wolf in some cases. These snakes are more defensive than aggressive though and would rather scare away a wolf if it could.

None of the snakes in Yellowstone are large enough to eat an adult wolf - the snake would die trying to swallow it. I don't think they'd even be able to take a pup - all the species in Yellowstone are rather small and thin-bodied and would prey on small rodents and amphibians. You'd probably need a large python or boa to be able to eat any age of wolf (or an anaconda or similarly large and thick-bodied snake, but we don't really have those in the U.S., much less in Yellowstone). Besides, snakes prefer live prey and sometimes will only eat live prey.

I highly doubt a wolf would eat snake or lizard eggs. They can eat snakes or lizards themselves, though.
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Re: Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

Post by x1103 » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:26 am

Pups are curious, so in theory it would be possible that they'd get in trouble with a snake defending itself right? (I remember asking this and about snake-wolf interaction too somewhere before but this is definitely more appropriate topic.)
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Re: Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

Post by valkea » Wed Mar 06, 2019 3:12 am

x1103 wrote:
Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:26 am
Pups are curious, so in theory it would be possible that they'd get in trouble with a snake defending itself right? (I remember asking this and about snake-wolf interaction too somewhere before but this is definitely more appropriate topic.)
Yes, this is definitely possible. Many snakes use biting as a last resort (even using false strikes as an intimidation tactic), but a pup could definitely push it into biting.
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Re: Questions about grey wolves and reptile interactions

Post by Koa » Wed Mar 06, 2019 4:19 pm

Any wolf-related questions need to be posted in Wolf Q&A.
Moved to Wolf Q&A.

In the context of Yellowstone, I do not think a snake would willingly go after a wolf and would only attack a wolf for defensive purposes. Outside of North America, I'd have to check.

There's a question still up of whether or not wolves actually fear snakes (as recent came out that dogs do not fear certain species), so this would obviously affect the nature of the reaction between wolves and snakes.
The newest evidence comes from a paper in Applied Animal Behavior Science, which found that dogs can smell the difference between a venomous rattlesnake and a harmless boa, but they find the smell intriguing rather than terrifying. And that means they’re more likely to investigate, putting themselves at risk of a dangerous bite.
http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/scien ... IBDXxZOmEc

Coyotes prey on snakes so I would expect wolves would prey on snakes, as well-- perhaps not to the same frequency.
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