5.2 The wolf: a faithful companion in love
And yes ! We are faithful in love and when we engage in the life of a couple, it is for life! We very often choose our companion during our first year. Therefore, we are faithful and tender towards our mate.
The age of maturity
The wolf reaches sexual maturity at the age of two and a she-wolf is in heat once a year. Wolves mate between February and May. Only the ‘Alpha’ pair mate. The gestation time is 63 days. Each litter has between one and eight wolf cubs.
Self-regulation, what is it?
A pack of wolves is able to self-regulate according to its territory and the number of prey available. When food is abundant and the territory large, the female ‘Alpha’ may allow other females to reproduce; but this is not the case in France where the packs are small and where the Alpha pair will be the only one to reproduce thus favoring the preservation of the existing pack. The wolf will be aggressive against other females in the pack.
In a den to give birth…
The she-wolf gives birth in the spring and needs a quiet place close to water to raise her young. She will either dig a den in the ground or find a hole that can be enlarged to protect her and her cubs from bad weather and predators.