Acta Theriologica

, Volume 48, Issue 2, pp 265–270 | Cite as

Food habits of wolves in central Italy based on stomach and intestine analyses

  • Francesco PezzoEmail author
  • Laura Parigi
  • Rosario Fico


We investigated wolfCanis lupus Linnaeus, 1758 food habits in central Italy by examining stomach and/or intestine contents of 59 individuals. Road accident and illegal kills were main causes of the wolves’ death. Ungulates represented the bulk of the diet (55% in frequency), and among them wild boar was the most important prey, followed by domestic Caprinae. Food items of domestic origin accounted for about 1/3 of all the diet. Diet composition did not vary between stomachs and intestines in spite of the higher degree of digestion of the intestines’ contents. The frequent detection of numerous larvae of Diptera and/or necrophagous Coleoptera, let suppose the consumption of already dead animals, and suggests a general underestimate of the wolf’s scavenging behaviour in previous studies based on scat analyses.

Key words

Canis lupus diet food habits Italy 


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Copyright information

© Mammal Research Institute, Bialowieza, Poland 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Section of Behavioural Ecology, Ethology and Wildlife Management, Department of Environmental SciencesUniversity of SienaSienaItaly
  2. 2.Istituto Zooprofilattico Sperimentale “G. Caporale”TeramoItaly

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