WOLF (AS. mull. Goth. wnlfs, (MG. wolf, “cr. Waif, wolf, connected with Lat. lupus, Mos, tokos. OChureh Slay. Lith. r Max, Skt. rrka, wolf, and with Skt. rraie, to rend, (1k. iDucco,, O('hureh Slay. rtekoti, to haul). The name of several typically ennino ani mals: specifically Ontis tapas. This. the 'wolf' of the whole Northern Hemisphere. is yellow ish gray, with strong coarse hair. which is long est mm the ears, neck, shoulders, and haunches, and especially on the throat; the muzzle is black, the upper lip and dun white. The ears are erect and pointed. the mask sharp; the legs rather longer them those of the shepherd-dog; the tail bushy, but not curling; the eyes oblique. giving a peculiarly vicious expression to the eountenance. The wolf is swift of foot. and hunts deer and other animals, packs of wolves associat ing for this purpose; it also often commits great ravages at night among sheep. and attacks calves. but seldom full-grown oxen or Mall. unless hard pressed by hunger. when it becomes very danger ous. In general. the wolf is cowardly and stealthy. is not easily I rn pped, being extremely ca ut ions, and appearing to understand the nature and pur pose of a trap almost as well as those by whom it is set.
Diversities appear in the wolves of different countries of Europe and Asia, hut not very eon siderable. The French wolves are generally browner, and rather smaller, than those of Ger many; wolves of Russia are larger, and have longer hair; in Italy and Turkey a tawny color predominates. The great black Pyrenean wolf is the most marked variety. Wolves are still very plentiful in some parts of Europe. In the Pyre nees and Ardennes, among the Carpathian Aloun tains and in Turkey, they are CO111111011; and in the forests of and Russia wolves often ap pear in formidable packs, and still cause much loss by their attacks on cattle, sheep, and horses. The wolf was formerly common in Great Britain, and the last wolf in Scotland is said to have been killed in 1743.
Although systematie naturalists have named numerous species and subspecies among Ameri can wolves, there are practically only two kinds —the large `gray,' tiniber; or Canadian wolf, which is practically identical with the wolf of the Old World; and the prairie wolf, or coyote.
The American form of the first-named species is more robust, and has longer, lighter hair on the average, than the Old World form, hut is practi cally the same. It is possible that the black wolf (('anis (der), a few' of \vhiell remain in the Flor ida Everglades, and an Arctic species (Canis &bus), pure white except the black tip of the tail, may prove to be distinct species. Once nu merous all Over the country, wolves are Dow unknown cast of the Mississippi and Lake 'Huron, never having been able to hold their place, in spite of plentiful refuges in the forests and mountains, as have the wolves of Europe. They are still numerous in the Rocky Mountains and on the Pacific coast, and exceedingly so in the northern part of 'British America, where they live upon the game and occasionally do great damage to the horses, sheep, and cattle on open ranches. They keep themselves hidden in the woods, and hence are known everywhere in the West as 'tim ber' wolves.
The other American wolf, smaller, redder, and addicted to an open country rather than to the forests, is the red or prairie wolf. or coyote. Until recently this wolf, which formerly ranged eastward as far as the prairies extended, but now is not known east of the dry plains, was re garded as only a single widespread and variable species (Canis la trans) : but systematists now believe that several distinct species of these small wolves should be recognized. See COYOTE.
South America has several wolf-like canine animals, described under Fox-Don, MAxut) and other names. For illustrations and bibliog raphy, see CANID.E: DOG.