Wolves continue to spread in Germany

Status: 02.12.2021 3:10 p.m.

In Germany there are currently 157 wolf packs recorded – 26 packs more than in the same area of ​​the previous year. The WWF calls for more support for grazing animal owners in order to better ward off attacks by wolves.

The number of wolves living in the wild has continued to rise in Germany. In the 2020/2021 study period, the authorities in the federal states counted a total of 157 packs, as the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) and the Federal Documentation and Advice Center on Wolf (DBBW) announced. That was 26 packs more than in the comparison period 2019/2020 with 131 wolf packs. At least 403 adult wolves lived in the areas.

In addition to the packs, 27 wolf pairs and 19 sedentary individual animals were confirmed nationwide, according to the Federal Office. The number of wolf pairs was halved, the number of individual animals was higher than that of the previous observation period. At that time, 45 pairs and nine loyal individual wolves were registered.

Several federal states are main habitats

The majority of wolves still live in a wide strip from Saxony in a north-westerly direction via Brandenburg, Saxony-Anhalt and Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania to Lower Saxony. Further wolf territories have been found in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Hesse, North Rhine-Westphalia and Thuringia.

Most wolf packs lived in Brandenburg (49) during the observation period between May 2020 and April 2021, followed by Lower Saxony (35) and Saxony (29). The period coincides with a biological wolf year from the birth of the puppies to the end of the first year of life.

Many wolves killed in accidents

A total of 138 wolves were found dead during the investigation period. Of these, 107 died in traffic accidents. In 13 wolves the cause of death was natural and nine wolves were killed illegally. The cause of death of five wolves was unclear and four wolves were deliberately killed as part of management measures.

More protection for farm animals is required

According to the nature conservation organization WWF, the current figures on the wolf population show that wolf-repellent herd protection is necessary across the board in Germany. “For this purpose, grazing animal owners need suitable fences, well-trained herd guard dogs, adequate training and advice and financial support.” The federal states should use EU funds for this.

In 2020, DBBW reported 942 (2019: 887) wolf attacks with 3959 (2894) killed, injured or missing farm animals. The federal states with wolf occurrences therefore spent a total of around 9.5 million euros on herd protection and damage compensation payments.


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