French forgotten how to hunt the wolf

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paul k

Well-Known Member
They'd be better off advertising in Eastern Europe where there are many more of the same species rather than the American timber wolf. It's worth mentioning that when the (lunatic) proposals for re-introducing the wolf to Scotland are discussed they would have to be European wolves as the indigenous species. There are more wolves in Western Europe than are generally supposed as Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Finland, Norway and Sweden also all have wolves present now and in many of these countries they never became extinct.
 
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Pine Marten

Well-Known Member
The wolf’s return to France from Italy has been an interesting story. After a few sporadic sightings maybe about a decade ago, they’ve become pretty well established in quite a short period of time. There aren’t that many, but they are able to cause spectacular carnage to flocks of sheep in particular. I saw a photograph a few years ago of something like two hundred sheep who had been stampeded over the side of a cliff by wolves. Easy pickings! The farmer may be compensated for the value of the individual lost sheep, but in effect he’s lost his livelihood if that happens, especially if he’s bred a flock over a number of years to produce a particular cheese, which is often these guys’ main product. That can’t be replaced with a cheque. So you can see how individuals can be pretty annoyed by wolves, independently of how admirable they are as a species.

Now interestingly, the single oldest civil service job in France is that of “Lieutenant de louveterie”, a post instituted by Charlemagne, entrusting a person with the responsibility of controlling the wolf population in a given area. It’s a voluntary job, with expenses paid only, and the holder is required to keep a pack of hounds and organise “administrative drives”. Essentially they’re responsible for pest control. In order to do this they can call on local hunting associations to help out. Mostly, they’ve been tasked with wild boar control in modern history. Only recently have they been asked to deal with wolves again, but of course the wolf hunting dog strains died out decades if not centuries ago through lack of available practice.

Combined with the fact that by the time you turn up to deal with a problem pack of wolves, they’re 200km away worrying someone else’s sheep, you can see why success has been limited.
 

news of the world

Well-Known Member
A friend of mine in Tuscany who we hunt Wild boar with,told me they were having a problem with wolves until they introduced the Maremma dog to the sheep.
Those that don't one are having regular raids on their flock.
It will only be a question of time before they take matters into their own hands..
 

paul k

Well-Known Member
The wolf’s return to France from Italy has been an interesting story. After a few sporadic sightings maybe about a decade ago, they’ve become pretty well established in quite a short period of time. There aren’t that many, but they are able to cause spectacular carnage to flocks of sheep in particular. I saw a photograph a few years ago of something like two hundred sheep who had been stampeded over the side of a cliff by wolves. Easy pickings! The farmer may be compensated for the value of the individual lost sheep, but in effect he’s lost his livelihood if that happens, especially if he’s bred a flock over a number of years to produce a particular cheese, which is often these guys’ main product. That can’t be replaced with a cheque. So you can see how individuals can be pretty annoyed by wolves, independently of how admirable they are as a species.

I imagine a farmer who loses his animals as TB reactors will have very similar emotions.
 
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