The wolves were considered gods in the Norse mythologies, and they were the first in the list of animals ever domesticated by man. Wolves come in many sizes, shapes and colors, ranging from the slim tawny wolves from the Falkland Islands to the brawny black wolves from Canada. The wolves have always managed to capture human fascination, but larger wolves have always received more attention. Let's find out more about the biggest wolf in the world.
The Largest Wolf in the World—Gray Wolf
When someone thinks of the biggest wolf, it’s obvious to think about the gray wolf. It’s the largest kind around today and is also the basic of several legends.
Known as the largest wild wolf today, the gray wolf comes in varying sizes, with female gray wolves weighing between 60 and 100 pounds and male gray wolves weighing 70 to 145 pounds. The color can vary as well, from tawny to gray, from black to white. They have slanted eyes that could be deep amber or yellow in color. They have narrow chests that allow for quick, efficient movement through brush, snow and other conditions. Gray wolves usually have a larger skull as compared to other breeds.
The gray wolf's progenitors first evolved about 800,000 years ago. This dominant canine predator now has more than 37 recognized subspecies found in six continents. They once had a strong presence in the United States, but they are now only limited to the Great Lakes area, Alaska and Yellowstone. Their favorite habitat is where they could find game, such as deer, or where they could prepare dens for cubs. They may also live in desert, tundra or grassland habitats.
Yes, even the largest wolf in the world faces this problem. As per National Geographic, the gray wolf was on the verge of extinction in the lower 48 U.S. states. Even today, not many exist outside Alaska. Even in Alaska, there are roughly 11,000 gray wolves alive. In Canada, more than 50,000 gray wolves exist, but the number would come down with hunting being legal.
There are lots of legends about gray wolves, and here is a famous and interesting one, in which a wolf married a princess. A Turkish emperor had two very beautiful daughters and had them locked up in a massive tower. Then, a deity appeared in the form of a gray wolf and married one of the daughters. The legend says that the girl gave birth to nine children who had the spirit of the gray wolf. That's why Turkish people believe that they have characteristic of the gray wolf, such as strength, courage and agility.