THE CENTER AND THE WOLF
In recent years the wolf (Canis lupus) population in Italy has expanded, leading to increasing contact with wolves in urban areas.
This has led to an increase in number of individuals either found injured and/or in bad condition due to e.g. road accidents, poaching, poisonings, etc and these problems are likely to increase in the future. The Center ‘ Centro tutela fauna esotica e selvatica, Monte Adone’ has since 1989 been involved in rescuing, nursing, and rehabilitating wild animals including seven wolves (from several Italian provinces), of which three were rescued in 2012.
Rescuing wild animals is a challenging task that can easily lead to failure if operated with lack of competence in the field. Due to its experience in dealing with wild animals, the Center has been an important reference point in rescuing and reintroducing wildlife, acting with prompt competence and efficiency in the management of emergencies.
Nowadays there are many projects involved in the conservation of the wolf. They mainly aim at preventing negative impacts on the wolf populations by monitoring and studying important aspects of this species biology and ecology. The Center, however, believes that an important component of the conservation of the wolf in Italy is needed: namely the development of a project that aims to rescue, treat and rehabilitate injured individuals. This project’s final goal would be to reintroduce individuals in the wild and monitor them to assess the level of success of the reintroductions.
The need for specialized rescuing centers, able to deal with wolves is increasing in Italy. The Center intends to respond to this increasing need through the development of the ‘Progetto Lupo Monte Adone’ (Wolf Project, Monte Adone) which aims at developing optimal structures and strategies for the management of the species while respecting the species’ characteristics.
OJECTIVES OF THE PROJECT
In a special area within the Center’s facility, which will match the wolf’s real habitat, the project aims at:
-Creating a facility for the reception of the individuals, with a devoted infirmary and connected enclosures for short stays.
-Developing learning activities and promotional material to increase public awareness;
-Developing scientific research activities;
-Creating a webpage devoted exclusively to this project within the Center’s web site.
In April 2012 the Center has already built an enclosure of 1200 m2 devoted to the treatment and rehabilitation of rescued wolves. We will evaluate later on whether an additional enclosure is needed for the same purposes.
We believe that this project could interest and involve not only the Italian region Emilia Romagna, but also surrounding regions sharing the same issues. Therefore, we feel that it is necessary for the provinces, municipalities, Regional and National parks, and any other institution dealing with the conservation of the wolf, which lack structures for the rescue and rehabilitation of injured individuals, to be involved in our project.
The final goal of the ‘Wolf Project, Monte Adone’ is to create a center specialized in rescuing, medical treatment, rehabilitation and final reintroduction in the wild of wolves that will be find injured or in bad condition in the future.
Through the project we aim to offer both practical skills in the management of all the actions mentioned above, and in the creation of research activities that, for example, will educate the public about this species. We aim to increase public awareness at all the possible levels, through actions that will involve the media and the internet.