Located in the southeast region of the United States, Georgia is home to a diverse range of landscapes that habit a variety of wildlife from mammals to fish which also includes wolves.
Though found in small numbers now, these magnificent creatures have long roamed the mountains and forests of the state.
Currently, both grey wolves and red wolves have been sighted in some parts of the state, making Georgia one of the few states where both species are found to exist.
While these wolves are occasionally sighted in a few parts of the state, it’s important to note that there is no established population of wolves in Georgia.
This, therefore, iterates the importance of wolf awareness among people of the state so that conservative efforts undertaken by the government are well supported and followed.
Below I’ve explained all the things you need to know about the wolves in Georgia.
Are There Wolves in Georgia?
No, currently, the state of Georgia doesn’t have an established population of wolves in the wild. However, there have been few reports of wolf sightings including both gray wolves and red wolves in a few parts of the state.
Some of the locations of these sightings include the north Georgia mountains and Okefenokee Swamp in the southern region of the state.
In addition to the forests and mountains, there is no established wolf population in Georgia’s state and national parks too. While there are few reports of individual wolves in areas like Chattahoochee-Oconee National forests, these are dispersed from nearby regions.
However, as the range and population of wild animals change over time, wolves’ presence in Georgia’s national and state parks may change in the future.
Where Can I See Wolves in Georgia?
It is important to note that most of the gray wolf and red wolf sightings in the state are rare and isolated. Therefore, a confirmed range of these wolves cannot be provided now. It is also believed that most of these wolves have wandered into Georgia from the neighboring states.
While the reintroduction of wolves especially red wolves is not yet planned in the state of Georgia, various initiatives by U.S. Wildlife Services are being undertaken to protect and restore wolf populations in their remaining range.
Why Is Georgia Called the Land of Wolves?
It is important to note that “Georgia” here is a country and not the state of the U.S. The Georgia state presently has very few unconfirmed numbers of individual wolves roaming in the wild.
The name of the country “Georgia” located in the south Caucasus is believed to be originated from the Persian word “gorg”. This word translates to “land of wolves” and hence the name.
This mountainous country is home to several species of wolves including the Eurasian wolf (Canis lupus lupus) and the Caucasian wolf (Canis lupus cubanensis). The availability of prey and undisturbed habitat with very less human population density makes Georgia one of the best countries for wolves to live. The same cannot be however said for the state of Georgia.
Also Check Our Guide On Wolves In US
How Many Red Wolves Are Left in Georgia?
Along with gray wolves, red wolves are another species of wolves often sighted by people in the state of Georgia.
Smaller and slender in build than the gray wolves, the red wolves were historically found throughout the southeast parts of the United States including parts of Georgia. They are a native species of Georgia and enjoyed and lived in the mountains among other creatures quietly and harmoniously until the European settlement.
In the early 1900s, these carnivores were eradicated from Georgia and many other states of the U.S., due to hunting, loss of habitat, and scarcity of prey. The present red wolves are found in the northeast region of North Carolina, where these wolves are listed under the Endangered species act.
As most of the wolf sightings and reports haven’t been confirmed, it is difficult to tell the precise number of red wolves in Georgia. Moreover, the red wolves and the gray wolves could easily be a dispersed pack of wolves from nearby states.
Also Check Our Guide On Wolf In Idaho
Can You Own Wolves in Georgia?
No, it is not illegal to own a wolf in Georgia as they come under exotic animals and are subject to strict regulations and restrictions under state law.
While you can own a wolf or other exotic animals by obtaining a valid permit from the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, the process however is difficult, and the permits are mostly given for educational or scientific purposes.
Other than legal reasons, it is also dangerous to own wild animals like wolves. These animals need exceptional care, can be unpredictable, and are dangerous to control. Therefore, instead of owning a wolf, it’s better to enjoy these animals from a distance in their natural habitat.
What Do Wolves Eat in Georgia?
As top predators, both red and gray wolves play a key role in regulating the prey population of their respective ecosystems.
While both wolves are carnivorous and consume meat there are a few differences in their dies which arise due to their range, biological characteristics like genetics and size.
Gray wolves and red wolves are opportunistic hunters; however, gray wolves eat a wide variety of prey species and red wolves eat specific mainly smaller animals like rodents and raccoons.
Although few exceptions to this exist when the wolf’s habitat changes or the prey becomes scarce in which case these wolves may also consume livestock like sheep and cattle.
And that was everything you need to know about the wolves in Georgia. I hope this article answered your queries.
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I’m a passionate animal lover and researcher, I’ve created this website so that people can learn about the size and characteristics of different animal species. My goal is to educate and inspire people to appreciate the diversity of our planet’s wildlife.