Here is the annual report “Wolf damage, prevention and compensation payments in Germany 2021” from the Federal Documentation and Advisory Center on Wolves (DBBW). About 3.5 percent of livestock over the year 2020 were victims of wolf attacks.
Regarding horses, it is 28 percent more. While in 2020, there were still 13 horses that were partially proven, and partially suspected of being victims of wolf attacks, in 2021 there were already 18 horses. In eleven of these horses, wolf can be confirmed as the cause using DNA. These are eight full-grown Shetland ponies or young Shetland ponies, two Connick foals in good condition, a 20-year-old single-bred foal and a young 40-year-old horse mare. Nine of these eleven horses died of their injuries.
Wolves learn to kill adult horses
The team, led by editors Ilka Reinhardt and Gesa Kluth of the LUPUS Institute for Wolves Monitoring and Research in Germany, explains that large animals such as horses or cattle are not as easy for wolves to capture as sheep and goats, for example, simply because of their body size.
However, attacks on cattle or horses are seen to increase in Europe when wild ungulates are scarce and sheep or goats are not available. In any case, it must be assumed that adult horses cannot protect themselves from attacks and therefore require protection of the herd. Attacks on large farm animals are often individually kept animals, small animals or small breeds (which is confirmed by the numerous attacks on ponies in 2021). However, according to the report, wolves can also learn to kill adult horses.
Most horse-related accidents in 2021 were reported from North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony. It is interesting that according to the report in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia, for example, “no” funding opportunities are provided for preventive measures against attacks by wolves on horses. “If necessary”, a special regulation can be drawn up. On the other hand, the same rule applies to sheep and goats in Lower Saxony. There you can apply for support for electric fences and necessary accessories, for example. Detaillierte Informationen zu den Regelungen in den einzelnen Bundesländern gibt es in dem Bericht des DBBW ab S. 14. Neben den Förderungen zur Prävention besteht bei geschädigten Tierhaltern teils auch die Option auf Auf Ausnnifgleichs, ngee den fern derungen gren Could you.
Confirmation of a new wolves territory in Saxony
DBBW recently announced another piece of news. It is established that a pair of wolves settled in the Marienberg region of Saxony. This was confirmed by the responsible government environmental agency on September 13, 2022. To date, there is no evidence of offspring in the pair of wolves. So the wolf-wolf, as the female wolves are called, is the daughter of the Vysluni group, which is not far from Saxony and lives mainly in the Czech Republic. The male, however, is unknown.
After the first indications of wolf activity in the Marienberg region in 2019 and the genetic detection of a deer being killed by a male wolf in 2021, there was reason for more monitoring until we could confirm the wolf area. This was followed by recordings from automatic wildlife cameras in early 2022, in which wolves could be seen and urine samples collected. The results of genetic screening of these urine samples along with the tracks of the two animals in the area confirm that the Marienberg region is the territory of the wolf pair.
The wolf specialist in Saxony is grateful for the information on animal sightings. This can be done online, for example, at www.wolf.sachsen.de. Animal owners in the area are also encouraged to review herd protection measures. You can also get advice on this.