Fun Southern Rocky Mountain Wolf Facts For Kids

Adekunle Olanrewaju Jason
Nov 08, 2022 By Adekunle Olanrewaju Jason
Originally Published on Aug 13, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
info_i
Read further to discover some awesome southern Rocky Mountain wolf facts!

Majestic, strong, and rarely seen alive, the southern Rocky Mountain wolf (Canis lupus youngi) was a subspecies of the gray wolf (Canis lupus) and a member of the Canidae family of wolves.

Identified in 1935, these wolves were an endangered species that were hunted and trapped excessively, which ultimately led to their complete extinction.

These majestic wolves were most commonly found in the southern part of the Rockies, where they shared the northern part of the mountains with their cousins, the northern Rocky Mountain wolves, an endangered species. These wolves are characterized by their beautiful gray coat, superior strength, strong hunting skills, and their unique tradition of mating for life.

Read further to learn some amazing facts about these animals, and do check out our Tundra wolf and Arctic wolf articles!

Southern Rocky Mountain Wolf Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a southern Rocky Mountain wolf?

The southern Rocky Mountain wolf or the Canis lupus youngi is a Gray wolf belonging to the Canidae family of wolves.

What class of animal does a southern Rocky Mountain wolf belong to?

This subspecies of the gray wolf is a mammal.

Where does a southern Rocky Mountain wolf live?

This subspecies of gray wolf used to be found in parts of North America such as Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Utah, and the Rocky Mountains (The Rockies). They also used to be found in Canada, Mexico, and parts of Eurasia. Other animals that are found in the Rockies include the wolverine and the white tailed deer.

What is a southern Rocky Mountain wolf's habitat?

The southern rocky mountain wolf or Canis lupus youngi was found in various regions, including the arctic tundra, forests, rocky mountains, and prairies.

Who do southern Rocky Mountain wolves live with?

This subspecies of gray wolf is social, and hence, they live in packs of six to 10 wolves. These packs often include a breeding male and female, their children, and other wolves.

How long does a southern Rocky Mountain wolf live?

The average lifespan of this subspecies of gray wolf is speculated to be five to six years. However, this species has been observed to live up to 15 years in captivity.

How do they reproduce?

These wolves are viviparous in nature, which means that they give birth to live young after sexual reproduction. The breeding season takes place between January and April. Following a pregnancy period of 60 days, a litter of six to seven pups is born. Females only reproduce once a year.

What is their conservation status?

As of 1935, the Southern Rocky Mountain wolf was declared Extinct due to excessive hunting by humans.

Southern Rocky Mountain Wolf Fun Facts

What do Southern Rocky Mountain Wolves look like?

These wolves have a light gray coat with hints of black and beige. They also have long tails, black fur on their backs, and they resemble the great plains wolf. These wolves grow up to 6 ft (1.8 m) in length and 140 lb (63.3 kg) weight and were considered to be excellent hunters.

The southern Rocky Mountain wolf is characterized by its beautiful grey coat, sharp teeth, and long tail

The above picture is a picture of the gray wolf. If you have a picture of the southern Rocky Mountain wolf, send us an email at hello@kidadl.com

How cute are they?

Due to their aggressive nature and superior hunting skills, these wolves are not considered to be cute, but rather, majestic and beautiful. However, this subspecies of the Gray wolf has been extinct since 1935 and has rarely been seen in its natural habitat.

How do they communicate?

They communicate using a combination of howling and olfactory senses. They can sense chemical signatures and pheromones in the air to target prey and locate members of their pack.

How big is a Southern Rocky Mountain Wolf?

The southern Rocky Mountain wolf can grow anywhere between 4-6 ft (1.2-1.8) in length. This makes them nearly three times bigger than a bush dog by length.

How fast can a southern Rocky Mountain wolf run?

The southern Rocky Mountain wolf was considered to be extremely agile, strong and a prime hunter. Although the exact speed is not known, these wolves were known for their speed and hunting skills.

How much does a southern Rocky Mountain wolf weigh?

The southern Rocky Mountain wolf has been observed to weigh between 120-140 lb (54.4-63.5 kg).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no specific names for the male and female wolves of this species. However, males of this species can simply be referred to as wolves, and females can be referred to as she wolves.

What would you call a baby southern Rocky Mountain wolf?

A baby gray wolf is simply referred to as a pup or whelp.

What do they eat?

These wolves eat a variety of herbivores such as buffalos, elk, bison, rabbits, deer, and so on.

Are they dangerous?

Yes, these wolves are considered to be dangerous. This is because they are aggressive hunters and carnivores. They also have extremely sharp canines that can rip apart flesh with ease.

Would they make a good pet?

No, these wolves would not make good pets. This is because they are aggressive carnivores that require a large, wild habitat. However, wolves of this species can be held captive in zoos and wildlife parks.

Did you know...

Southern Rocky Mountain wolves were only discovered, identified, and classified in 1935. They were declared extinct in the same year due to excessive hunting for their fur and teeth.

Another subspecies of the same family is the Nothern Rocky Mountain wolf (endangered species), which dwells in the northern part of the Rockies. Although these wolves still exist today, they are highly endangered and a variety of conservation steps have been taken to prolong the existence of this subspecies.

Following the extinction of southern Rocky Mountain wolves, a variety of steps have been taken to introduce the Northern Rocky Mountain Wolves to the southern part of the Rockies. Scientists believe that this move will help to balance the ecosystem and improve the population of these wolves.

These wolves mate for life. Females or she wolves choose their mates and stay and breed with these mates for the rest of their lives.

The gray wolf (Canis lupus subspecies) is a social species that form very strong relationships with members of its pack. Whenever pups are born into the pack, they are fed and taken care of by all members of the pack.

For the first month and a half of their lives, all members of the pack feed the pups regurgitated food.

There have reportedly been sightings of these wolves in the southern Rockies since 1935. However, it has been proven that these are the northern rocky mountain wolves that have wandered to the south of the Rockies in search of prey.

How did the southern Rocky Mountain wolf go extinct?

This species went extinct around 1935. This was because they were excessively hunted and poisoned by humans for their fur and teeth.

They were also often hunted by trophy hunters for sport. The northern rocky mountain wolf species are endangered due to hunting as well. Other animals that have gone extinct due to excessive hunting are the dodo and the western black rhino.

Southern Rocky Mountain wolf reported sightings

There have reportedly been sightings of these wolves in the Southern Rockies since 1935. However, it has been proven that these are the northern rocky mountain wolves that have wandered to the south of the Rockies in search of prey.

These wolves are often confused with the Northern Rocky Mountains (Endangered species) because they both belong to the same species and are very similar in appearance.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these coyote facts and gray fox facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Southern rocky mountain wolf coloring pages.

*Please note, the main image is of a northern Rocky Mountain wolf. If you have an image of a southern Rocky Mountain wolf, let us know at hello@kidadl.com.

We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Adekunle Olanrewaju Jason

Bachelor of Science specializing in Mass Communication.

Adekunle Olanrewaju Jason picture

Adekunle Olanrewaju JasonBachelor of Science specializing in Mass Communication.

With over 3+ years of professional experience, Olanrewaju is a certified SEO Specialist and Content Writer. He holds a BSc in Mass Communication from the University of Lagos. Throughout his dynamic career, Olanrewaju has successfully taken on various roles with startups and established organizations. He has served as a Technical Writer, Blogger, SEO Specialist, Social Media Manager, and Digital Marketing Manager. Known for his hardworking nature and insightful approach, Olanrewaju is dedicated to continuous learning and improvement.
Read full bio >