Island Of The Wolves….A Year In The Life of Russian Wolf Pups

Island of the Wolves follows a little pack of Russian wolf pups around for a year. You watch them grow up in the thirty minute video. It’s all part of wolf research being conducted in the northwestern Tver region of Russia. It’s prime wolf habitat and where Vladimir-Bologov,  a wolf biologist, studies and advocates for wolves. He followed in his father’s footsteps, who was also a wolf researcher. They’ve observed wolves in the Tver region for thirty years.

Wolves have no protections in Russia, they can be killed at anytime of the year. The Russian government pays 45 euros for every wolf killed. Many hunters make a living trapping and hunting wolves.

Vladimir-Bologov along with French biologist, Laetitia Becker, raise and observe wolf pups bought from hunters and zoos. They have successfully released wolf pups back into the wild.

Once you click on the link below, to watch Island of the Wolves, you’ll see a myriad of other videos starring pups they’ve raised and released.  I’ve watch most of them and I can tell you the pups are adorable.

Both researchers are doing noble work. If they hadn’t rescued the pups, there is no doubt they would have been killed. They are striving to make a difference for wolves in Russia, specifically abolishing the bounty system, which only encourages hunters to kill wolves. 

We can take heart there are good people around the world ready to fight for animals like the wolf, who are so persecuted.

From Russia Today (RT):

It’s a relentless beast, a dangerous predator lurking in the forest, a ruthless hunter in search of a victim for a bloody feast. It’s a cute, caring, social animal that loves wild strawberries and is afraid of living in the woods. Which of these descriptions is true?

With this 30-minute video we offer you the opportunity to find out yourself. Spend a year with a pack of wolves. At the beginning of the video they are just a month old and have no idea how to survive, but they know they must survive in the wild. Every day brings new discoveries, every step they make gives us a chance to understand the world they’re living in. And this world only seems distant.

TO WATCH  “Island of the Wolves”  CLICK HERE 


If you want to help please contact Lupus Laetus :


The Return Of Wolves

by Astrid Szelest, July 2009


Photo: Courtesy Russia Today

Posted in: Russian wolves, Howling for Justice

Tags: Taiga, Russian wolf pups, global wolf persecution, Island of the Wolves, biodiversity

Published in: on September 20, 2010 at 12:55 am  Comments (30)  

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  1. Makes me sick to my stomach knowing these pups will never know their parents and that their parents can’t teach them how to survive in the wild. If we didn’t have people like this russian guy, the wolf pups would face an uncertain future. Then again, if they are released back into the wild, who says they won’t be shot by those disgusting cowardly hunters?


  2. There is a struggle going on in Russia which has played out in many countries like ours. The struggle involves the old hunting and trapping ways of another time that is facing opposition from people that want a 21st century wildlife ethic which includes the banning of forms of hunting like bear denning, which has been banned in many provinces already. Russia has proved that when they take conservation serious (like the Siberian tiger) that they can achieve positive results.


    • William, hunting was understandable thousands and thousands of years ago, but this is 2010. Hunting for the most part nowadays ain’t nothing, but a bloodsport for cowards who get their jollies shooting animals dead with their high powered rifles. I watched a video few months ago of how russian hunters shoot bears as soon as they came out of hibernation. It is truly disgusting, so disgusting that it boils my blood and makes me have an extreme hatred for cowards like that. The siberian tiger, the biggest tiger alive and there aren’t that many left. The bengal tiger of India also faces an uncertain future. It will be truly disgusting if we lose these 2 tigers.


  3. Around the world is still people who care love and do all this things for our beloved Wolfs. Congrats to them they fight against laws hunters and haters. The pups are so adorable so cute i love them i wish always be safe away from any danger..




  5. Last Saturday evening I went into the National Forest behind my home to see if I could call and maybe locate some wolves. I did not have any luck but did hear some bull elk’s bugling around 1a.m. The interesting thing was I was probably 10 miles back and for most of the night vehicles were driving by me and shooting their rifles. I get the sick feeling that they are poaching. Jon’s comment about disgusting hunters hits home with me. How do wolves and other wildlife stand a chance when unethical hunters are doing this unchecked? Just not right!


    • I’ve seen this myself Marc AND alcohol is usually involved. So we have drunk poachers running around the woods in their rigs with high powered rifles. Great combination. You can’t safely walk in the woods anymore.



  6. Marc,They are not even hunters.They are crazy people with guns.I could say alot of words to describe them but I would have to be censored.


  7. Poachers suck, and they are reckless. I spent some time in the 80s with an old high school friend that moved just outside Tongass nat Forest in Alaska. We spent several months following a wolf pack of Alexander Archapelago Timber Wolves. My friend Dana thinks to this day that Romeo’s parents were the acual wolves that we watched for those months. As everyone knows a known poacher from Juneau was charged with killing Romeo and 2 black bears. They are arrogant scumbags and they don’t want anyone to have any joy around wildlife, they hate it when we name these wolves because they see them as objects to kill only- so why would we name them- they see wildlife as objects that they can dominate


    • Romeo

      Steve Quinn / AP file photo

      Tuesday, May 25, 2010
      Story last updated at 5/25/2010 – 10:14 am
      Men arrested for killing black wolf

      By Mary Catharine Martin | JUNEAU EMPIRE
      Alaska Wildlife Troopers have arrested two men for unlawfully killing a black wolf and two black bears in the Juneau area.

      Speculation by the community as to whether or not the black wolf is Romeo, the unusually sociable black wolf who frequented the area around the Mendenhall Glacier but disappeared last fall, can’t be verified, said Alaska State Troopers spokesperson Officer Beth Ipsen.

      She said the troopers found the wolf’s hide in their investigation.

      “We don’t know the name of the wolf, and whether or not it is Romeo,” she said. “We investigate regardless of who the wolf is.”

      A release posted on the State Troopers’ website says that shortly after 5 p.m. Friday, Alaska Wildlife Troopers arrested Jeffrey Peacock, 46, of Lebanon, Penn., and Park Myers, 40, of Juneau for unlawful taking of big game animals.

      The men were also found to be operating an unlawful bear bait site north of Juneau, along the road system. Peacock was arrested on a warrant for unsworn falsification, taking big game in a closed area, baiting bears without a permit and three counts of unlawful possession of game. His bail was set at $10,000.

      Myers was arrested under a warrant for taking big game by unlawful methods, baiting bears without a permit and three counts of unlawful possession of game. His bail was set at $2,500.

      Both men were lodged at the Lemon Creek Correctional Center on Friday, though a spokesman at Lemon Creek said neither was in custody at the facility as of Monday evening.

      A Juneau radio station quoted the State Troopers Lt. Steve Hall as saying the wolf was taken last fall.

      Romeo’s last known sighting was Sept. 18.

      The arrests were the result of an investigation conducted by the United States Forest Service, United States Fish and Wildlife Service and the Alaska Wildlife Troopers in Juneau.

      Contact reporter Mary Catharine Martin at 523-2276

      A comment on the scumbag poachers, bottom feeders:

      “….Peacock and Myers are not hunters, they’re killers. No one eats fall black bears. No one eats wolves. In fact, Peacock and Meyers are not even good killers. They set up illegal bait stations to kill bears and they shot a wolf who was as tame as a dog.”


      • A hunter will claim poachers are not the same as hunters, but let a judge rule to relist the wolves and the hunters will turn poacher very fast in order to shoot wolves illegally. We all know about their threats online that they are going to shoot, shovel, and shutup. I guarantee you most of the people who poach in idaho or Montana most likely hold a hunting license. It makes me sick to my stomach when you have a special wolf like Romeo come along only to be gunned down by some coward with a gun. Romeo was taken away from the people who enjoyed seeing him. How are wolves like him going to be protected from hunters and poachers?


      • Very well said Jon. As soon as the ruling came down they were all threatening to kill wolves illegally. Hypocrites.

        As for Romeo, his mother was killed by a hunter/poacher? This beautiful, lonely wolf never had a real family except for his friends in Juneau. He was nine years old when he was murdered. A long time for a wolf to live in the wild. One of those cretins took his life like it was nothing and left people that loved him to grieve. Sick, cold hearted idiots, lacking empathy. Hmmm that’s the description of a psychopath.



      • Nabeki, they are hypocrites. They are not stewards of the land or the conservationists they claim to be. They care very little for predators and only care about those animals they hunt, deer, elk, moose, etc. Time and time again, you will see hunters on different websites exposing their true agenda when the topic of predators come up. I have seen very few hunters say anything good about mt. lions, wolves, or even bears and this leads me to believe that they care nothing for wildlife, only the wildlife they want to hunt. They want predators basically exterminated or brought down to very limited #s and it has to do with hunting opportunities.


      • Trophy hunting is evil Jon, it should be banned. The animals they’re killing belong to all of us. I guess we didn’t realize just how much power fish and game agencies hold over the lives and deaths of our native wildlife.



      • I don’t know about Romeo’s mother, but I believe a hunter/poacher killed him. How are we supposed to protect these special wolves from being gunned down by a cowardly hunter? Listen to what this naturalist had to say about romeo.

        [Romeo’s] name appeared in headlines around the world. Animal lovers everywhere wanted to hear about Juneau’s resident black wolf, a creature that seemed to bridge the gap between humanity and the wild animal kingdom. He attracted crowds to his regular hangout near the Mendenhall Glacier for years until his unexplainable disappearance last September.

        Naturalist Nick Jans (the article includes some of his photos) said his dogs were regular playmates for Romeo.

        “He developed a huge crush on our female Lab, Dakotah, and that’s how he got his name,” Jans said. “He would hang around our back door and sometimes be waiting in our yard. My wife Sherrie said, ‘There’s that Romeo wolf again.’ The name stuck.”

        Jans described Romeo’s presumed death as a Shakespearean tragedy.


        “I never expected that I’d end up having this incredible, ongoing wildlife encounter,” Jans said. “… This animal is the most singular that I’ve ever met.”

        rip Romeo, may karma get that piece of crap that killed you!


      • A tragic loss Jon of a very special wolf. Romeo’s loss reminds me of Limpy. Both extraordinary wolves.



  8. The only difference between a hunter and a poacher is that a hunter kills an animal legally and a poacher does not. The outcome is still the same, the animal is dead, it is never coming back again and people lose out the chance to see that amazing animal in the wild. To me, it does not matter who shot Romeo, poacher or hunter, it’s all the same. Do you think by a hunter shooting and killing a wolf, that is going to make it seem better to advocates? the wolf is still dead no matter who shot it. Hunters and poachers, there really isn’t much of a difference except one pays to slaughter animals and the other one doesn’t. Could you imagine how many animals would be slaughtered by hunters if they didn’t have rules or didn’t have to pay to kill animals? Don’t think for one second that a so called hunter wouldn’t turn poacher on wolves if they get relisted. In every hunter, there is a poacher just waiting to come out.




  10. Russia, what it does to wolves and bears is abhorrent. Live wolves are used in Borzoi dog trials. The wolf is leashed and dog handlers let their -dogs- chase and maul it.
    Sick freaks.


    • Hi John,
      That’s what makes these two wolf researchers so special. They are fighting an uphill battle but determined to do their best to help wolves.



  11. Jon…Excellent thought. “A hunter will claim poachers are not the same as hunters, but let a judge rule to relist the wolves and the hunters will turn poacher very fast in order to shoot wolves illegally.” May I use this quote in the future? Thanks, Marc


    • Ofcourse Marc!


  12. Check out this article by notorious wolf hater Jim Beers. He wants mt. lions and wolves to be shot on sight.


    • How odd “Beers”. Swap an e for an i and you get ‘Biers’…
      Fans, casual followers, dippers of toe, critics or people dragged screaming by ankles by their friends into the ‘Twilight’ books or movies will get the reference.


      • Treating wildlife as vermin. We should all be very greatful this guy has no power because if he did and he had the power to make things happen, native wildlife would be in very big trouble because of people like this beers character.


      • Very clever John!!



    • True Jon,
      He also supports the notion that wolves readily attack and eat people, supporting Geist’s book ‘Wolves in Russia’.

      “We owe a debt of gratitude to Graves for Wolves in Russia – a work that combines a realistic outlook and an understanding based on years of research and travel. This information from Russia in an antidote to certain American, environmental delusions.”

      ~Jim Beers, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Wildlife Biologist.

      Then only thing worse than a madman, is a madman with power.


      • Correction, that was Grave’s book, edited by Geist.


  13. There’s the good blokes Vladimir Bologov who raise wolves and have a deep concern for their welfare. But something I can’t get my mind around is a person like Mikhail Starodubtsev, a person who takes in orphaned wolf pups, but continues to kill wolves. He says “he likes wolves but sometimes culling is also needed to keep their numbers down.” Difference? Vladimir is a biologist, Mikhail is a forest ranger.
    Nearly 30 000 wolves lose their lives every year in Russia because there is clearly not enough understanding of predator-prey relationships and wolf behaviour, that or the care factor for such information is 0 because of the profit made from the live-and-kicking Russian fur trade.


    • Totally agree John. What Mikhail Starodubstev is doing does not make any sense. It also reminds me of how little support gray wolves in the Northern Rockies received from the biologists that I thought fully supported them. Doug Smith and David Mech both come to mind. Smith supported the wolf hunts and said some pretty controversial things, like wolves shouldn’t be allowed in agricultural areas, that wolves should be hunted later in winter when their pelts are thicker. Mech also supports wolf hunts. So it seems the very people, the biologists, that I thought would fully support wolves, gave the anti-wolf crowd lots of fodder. They could point to Mech and Smith and say, “look they support wolf hunts”. That really upset me.



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