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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Two Wolves Original ACEO by thebluewindmill

This beautiful ACEO from thebluewindmill has a wonderful background story that is shared below. I serve as challenge leader for our team.

In 1995 fourteen wolves were transported from Canada to Yellowstone National Park as part of a wolf reintroduction plan. The reason that the U.S. had to get wolves from outside of the country is because there were no longer enough wolves in the country to accommodate the plan.

Wolves are a keystone predator, meaning that without them nature falls out of balance and other species of animals are then adversely affected, as was the case in Yellowstone. According to official records, 1926 was the last year that wolves were killed in the national park. Due to the absence of wolves, the numbers of elk, as well as other large prey animals multiplied and spiraled out of control, decreasing the new growth of vegetation such as deciduous woody species like upland aspen and riparian cottonwood.

Furthermore, coyotes moved in filling the void that the wolves had left, but they were not equipped to control the large animal prey and also had a negative effect on other species such as the red fox.

In the winter of 1996-1997 the last 17 wolves were released into Yellowstone as part of the recovery plan.

Without our wild comrades, our ecosystem was thrown out of balance; and it took nearly three decades, an estimated cost of “$200,000 to $1 million per wolf”, and scores of dedicated workers to restore this balance.

Defenders of Wildlife reports:
“Today the Yellowstone ecosystem, which includes the park itself, plus parts of Montana, Wyoming and Idaho, is home to almost 800 wolves in more than 50 packs.”

A great success story for our wild companions!

Information found at the following websites:
Yellowstone Park Wolf Reintroduction Plan
Wikipedia Article on Wolf Reintroduction
Defenders of Wildlife News Release


  1. What an awesome image and... story, Heather :)
    THANKS so much for sharing how complex the holistic point of view is !

  2. Beautiful wolves from one of our favorite artists!

  3. I love all of Heather's art. It is so full of life!

  4. Beautiful! Thank you for the enlightening information about wolves. I knew the problem was severe, but had no idea it had reached that proportion.


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