I have to thank my friend Jenn, who found these videos and posted them on her My Muskoka blog.
We hear the wolves often here... and so far this year we've located two deer kill sites: one on the lake, not far from my own house. (that's the second time the wolf pack has borrowed my 'front lawn' for a picnic over the years. Although, to give them credit, they restrict this to the times of year when there are very few people around.) One was found by guests skiing one of our trails. They were quite interested in exploring the myriad of tracks around the kill-site, doing a little forensic investigation.
It's alright -- you can still cheer for the wolves. Last night almost 14 deer rambled across the road and dropped by while I was bringing the horses in for the night. There is no shortage of deer.
All the same, seeing tracks, finding kills, and hearing wolves is not seeing wolves. That's much more rare. Guests last month did spot a pair of wolves chasing a deer across the bay while they were snowshoeing on the Lookout.
This video was taken this past week in Algonquin Park -- from the deck of the Visitor's Centre. It is a very rare look at the interaction of a pack of wolves feeding on a deer carcass, and how exciting for those folks who were at the Centre at the time and got this chance!
Wolf dynamics are not all amicable -- there is a definite heirarchy, often only challenged by the ravens who are the best tattle-tales when you are out in the bush looking for a kill-site. In this video, you can see the rest of the pack restlessly waiting for their chance to eat. Wolves aren't the only ones who benefit from a downed deer -- ravens, crows, foxes all come to find a meal, and later, porcupines and mice dispose of the remaining bones to get calcium. Nothing is wasted in Nature.
And sometimes, the 'alpha wolf' finds a pack member ready to challenge that position -- particularly when deer is on the menu.
Our guests have seen a lot of animals while they've been on that viewing deck at the Algonquin Park Visitor Centre. (That's why we include a Day Pass into the Park with all our cottage rentals.) That these videos were shot right from the deck of the Visitor Centre just goes to show that Algonquin Park is fantastic at every season of the year, and there is just no excuse for hanging around the city when you could be bringing the family out into Canada's Great Outdoors.