During the Funny River Fires in May not only humans suffered but 5 wolf pups were separated from their parents and orphaned. Luckily a group of firemen were able to save the pups and now they have found a permanent home at Minnesota Zoo. The public will get their first glimpse of these five on September 18.
The fire decimated 200,000 acres of land on Alaska’s Kenai peninsula and is also claimed the lives of the pups mother. After battling the blaze Alaskan firefighters staked out the den for 2 days in the hope the mother would return. Unfortunately she never did and they stepped in to rescue the pups.
Intially the cubs were taken to Alaska Zoo where they received treatment due to injuries from porcupine quills and began to receive feeds every 3 hours. The Alaska Zoo had a wolf pack on display at the time and were not able to home this group. After this the Alaska Fish and Game Department took on the task of homing the pups receiving requests from many zoos wanting to home them. The zoo and the fish and game department have worked together to rehome in three brown bears in the past.
Just after their rescue the cubs received names. The firefighters were honoured by having the pups named after their home towns and crew name. As such they have been called “Gannett, Hooper, Stebbius, Husila and X-Ray.”
The wolf pup’s boarded a Delta Airlines flight when they were just 8 weeks old to move to Minnesota. Zoo keepers have worked since then to raise the cubs by providing nutrition and medical care so they will be healthy as adults.
The wolf exhibit on Medtronic Minnesota Trail will be the packs home for the rest of their lives.
Photo Credit: Minnesota Zoo