Addis Ethiopia Weblog

Ethiopia's World

The Endemic Ethiopian Wolf

Posted by addisethiopia on April 13, 2014

In the video, the well-known German documentary filmmaker attempts to locate and film some of the world’s rarest and most endangered species. This time, Andreas Kieling encountered the extremely rare Ethiopian wolves, 400 kilometers southeast of the capital, Addis Abeba. Here extends the largest contiguous alpine landscape of the entire African continent – the Balé Mountains. This national park is considered a hotspot for rare species. Andreas Kieling accompanied Argentine biologist and wolf specialist, Claudio Sillero-Zubiri from the “Ethiopian Wolf Conservation Programme“.
Ethiopian wolves are very localized endemics confined to Afroalpine pockets in the highlands of Ethiopia. Habitats suitable for wolves extends from above the tree-line at about 3,000m up to 4,500m, but subsistence agriculture reaches up to 3,500-3,800m in many areas, restricting wolves to higher ranges.
The surviving populations are confined to a few mountain ranges in Gondar, Wollo, Shoa, Arsi and Bale Regions (see map). The largest population is found in the Bale Mountains National Park in the southeast. Remnant populations occur in the Simien Mountains, Mount Guna, North and South Wollo, Menz, all north of the Rift Valley, and in the Arsi Mountains to the south. Recently extinct in Gosh Meda (North Shoa), and absent from Mt Choke, Gojjam, where it was reported until early this century.
There are no recent records of the species at altitudes below 3,000m, although specimens were collected at 2,500 m from Gojjam and northwestern Shoa at the beginning of the century. Reports in the Simien Mountains exist since the species was first described in 1835.
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