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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

Arabian Wolf

The Arabian Wolf (Canis lupus arabs), is a mammal of the order Carnivora. It is a subspecies of Gray Wolf which was once found throughout the Arabian Peninsula, but now only lives in small pockets in Southern Israel, Oman, Yemen, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia.

Their ears are proportionately larger in relation to body size when compared to other species, an adaptation needed to disperse body heat. This subspecies is unusual, as it is not known to howl. Arabian wolves are unique among gray wolves due to the middle two toes of their paws being fused, a trait originally thought unique to the African Wild Dog. Like other wolves, the Arabian wolf’s eyes are yellow, but many are found with brown eyes, which may indicate that a portion of the population is not of pure blood anymore and that their ancestors have interbred with feral dogs. This poses a very serious threat to the survival of this subspecies.

Arabian wolves do not live in large packs, and instead hunt in pairs or in groups of about three to four animals. Arabian wolves will attack and eat any domestic animal up to the size of a goat. As a result, farmers will not hesitate to shoot, poison, or trap them. Arabian wolves also feed on hares, rodents, ungulates, and any carrion they can find. They will also take livestock when in the vicinity of human settlements.

Arabian Wolf