Acta Theriologica

, Volume 51, Issue 1, pp 99–106

Feeding ecology of wolvesCanis lupus returning to Germany

  • Hermann Ansorge
  • Gesa Kluth
  • Susann Hahne

DOI: 10.1007/BF03192661

Cite this article as:
Ansorge, H., Kluth, G. & Hahne, S. Acta Theriol (2006) 51: 99. doi:10.1007/BF03192661


Following several years of occasional occurrence, several wolvesCanis lupus Linnaeus, 1758 have established a resident population in northeastern Saxony (Eastern Germany). From 2001 to 2003, we collected and analysed 192 scats ofC. lupus. Results of our study are expressed as the frequency of occurrence of prey species and the percentage of biomass consumed using coefficients of digestibility as well as two variants of an equation for prey mass per collectable scat. Diet composition of the wolves was restricted to a few food items, mostly wild ungulates. These remains were found in 97% of the scats, representing 99% of the biomass consumed by the wolves. Roe deerCapreolus capreolus was the most frequent and most important prey, constituting nearly of one half the biomass. Red deerCervus elaphus was recorded in one-third of the samples, followed by wild boarSus scrofa, mouflonOvis am mon musimon and brown hareLepus europaeus. Compared with game occurrence, roe deer was clearly preferred over the other species. A difference between winter and summer diets was mainly due to the high occurrence of young wild boar in summer. The general diet pattern of the wolf in Saxony corresponds with that found in the naturally occurring populations in Europe.

Key words

wolf diet roe deer prey preference seasonal difference 

Copyright information

© Mammal Research Institute, Bialowieza, Poland 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hermann Ansorge
    • 1
  • Gesa Kluth
    • 2
  • Susann Hahne
    • 3
  1. 1.Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde GörlitzGörlitzGermany
  2. 2.Wildbiologisches Büro LUPUSSpreewitzGermany
  3. 3.Zittau/Görlitz University of Applied SciencesZittauGermany

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