|Homepage Ralph Häussler||
Wolfpark Werner Freund, Merzig (Germany)
This is a great place - a must for every wolf afficionado. The wolf park was founded by Werner Freund in 1977 as a centre to study wolf behaviour.
I last visited the wolf park "Werner Freund" in summer 2017.
Wolves: There are several packs of socialised wolves in the wolf park "Werner Freund"
Photographs: It is generally rather difficult to take photos of the wolves in the enclosures due to the mash fencing and the fact that there is a large gap between footpath and enclosure which makes it even more difficult to focus. There are also a number of lookout towers to observe several of the enclosures.
Free entrance during the day. Guided tour on the first Sunday of each month.
No longer dog friendly since 1st Jan 2020!
More info: click here for website!
Wolf Conservation Trust, Beenham, U.K.
I last visited Beenham in January 2015. The Trust now seems to be closed to visitors unfortunately
Wolves: There are 10 wolves, 9 of them are socilaized and are taken out for walks on a lead.
Enclosures: the rather rectangular enclosures are relatively large; there are some landscape features, like an artifical mount and pond in each ot them, and some trees. Not much space for the wolves to retreat; they are always on display.
Packs: The wolves are split up in four groups of 2-3 wolves. One group of Arctic wolves, and three groups of Timber wolves which are related to each other; hence it seems a bit odd to separate parents and cubs.
Photographs: Generally difficult to take photos of the wolves in the enclosures due to the mash fencing. One window from the 'shop' into one of the enclosures. Better to take photos of the wolves on a walk, but then they all have a chain lead held by two keepers...
NOT dog friendly!
Further information: see UKWCT website.
Worms Zoo - "Tiergarten Worms", Germany
They had wolves since the zoo opened at its current location more than 40 years ago.
My last visit: January 2020
Wolves: European Wolves! Currently there are only four wolves left: the father (b.2007 in Dortmund Zoo) and his three sons (b.2009 in Worms Zoo) - all of them are castrated. In 2010, there were 10 cubs, but all of them were given away to other zoos and wolf parks, e.g. two cubs went to the wolf park in Merzig
Enclosure: a very professional enclosure; very god landscaped enclosure with different activity zones. The enclosure is about 2,500 square metres large (and should really be expanded) and the pond should be repaired since it is usually dry in summer. But otherwise a very good enclosure that provides enrichment for the wolves
Photographs: very good place to taking photographs: several locations with large glass windows and one two locations overlooking the enclosure from above: no fence in the way! You can usually find the wolves, even if they have retreated in the less visible parts of their enclosure.
The zoo is dog friendly (and the wolves do not usually bother when they see dogs...)
For more information, click here for the zoo website.
Wildlife Park, Kurpfalzpark, Wachenheim, Germany
A Wildlife Park with a large wolf enclosure. Great place!
My last visit: August 2018
Wolves: Three European wolves. One wolf unfortunately died in summer 2018. All the wolves are socialised and the keeper goes into the wolf enclosure for the daily "wolf show". The wolves are really cute!
Enclosure: a comparatively large enclosure - some 5,000 square metres, landscapes, with pond etc. Completely visible to the vistors from one side.
Photographs: the metal fence makes it rather difficult to take any good photos, esp. since one has to keep a certain distance to the fence (c.1.5-2 metres).
More information, see website.
Vienna Zoo, Tiergarten Schönbrunn, Austria
Very traditional zoo, founded in the 18th century, in the park of Schönbrunn Castle in Vienna, part of the Schönbrunn world heritage site.
My last visit: May 2017
Wolves: Three Arctic wolves, two male and one younger female.
Enclosure: a comparatively large enclosure with lots of trees, on a slope; rather large habitat compared with other enclosures in this zoo. It is entirely on a slope. Unfortuately there is not much space for the wolves to retreat from public view (apart from the kennels). It seems that there is no pond. A couple of viewing platforms for the wolves.
Photographs: the best place to take photos is the little two-story timber house "Wolfsblick" with a number of glass windows to view the wolves. Most of them are rather small. Good exhibition in this house about wolves. Otherwise it is more difficult to take photos due to the mesh fencing.
Feeding: several days per week in the morning: see Schönbrunn zoo website for details.
No dogs allowed in the zoo.
More information on the Zoo Vienna website.
Zoo Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain
Central location in the city centre of Barcelona. Large, traditional zoo. Worth a visit!
My last visit: September 2018
Wolves: Iberian Wolves - similar to European wolves, but typical for the Iberian Peninsular where some of them still live in the wild; they are smaller than the European wolves and with particular markings on their front legs. On the day of my visit, I could only see one female wolf all day. No idea why she was alone.
Enclosure: a comparatively small enclosure, esp. when compared with other enclosures in this zoo. There is a little pond, a small mount, some dog houses. But it should really be much larger! It has a prominent location and information panels are very good. The zoo is part of the breeding programme for Iberian Wolves; hence one would expect more! Also more information on the individual wolf (or wolves?) would have been much appreciated. The one wolf, is this bitch part of the breeding programme? her age? how many litters? etc.
Photographs: there two sections with glass windows that make it possible to take photos! Unfortunately the glass needs some cleaning!
See Zoo Barcelona Website for more information.
Wildlife Park - Wildpark Bad Mergentheim, Germany
A great wildlife park. Absolutely worth a visit!
My last visit: September 2018
Wolves: Timber Wolves. More than 30 in one pack, including one little cub! Amazing!
Enclosure: a comparatively large enclosure! Unfortuately only one small section is visible for the visitors (see photo), the rest of the enclosure is hidden from the visitors, i.e. you might have to wait some itme for wolves to turn up! But they are fed twice a day in the front of the enclosure and there are therefore lts of photo opportunities!
Photographs: no fence, just a large ditch separates the enclosure from the visitors. Taking photos is therefore no problem when the wolves are in the visible part of the enclosure or when they are fed. And they are fed twice a day, with a nice commentary, hence no problem to see all the wolves during your visit!
For more information, see wildlife park website.
@ZLS Whipsnade Zoo (Zoological Society London), UK
My last visit to Whipsnate Zoo was rather disappointing since the wolves had been killed a week before my visit. Hence the rather disappointing sign "this exhibit has closed". Why do zoos never thank their animals for the lifelong service??!!!
Enclosure: the enclosure was comparatively large, but not very well landscapes; no major points of interest visible.
Photographs: it would have been rather difficult to take photos due to the fence. No glass windows, no lookout towers...
Instead of wolves, Whipsnade Zoo now has a group of Painted Wolves (African Hunting Dogs): they are also very cute, and threatened by extinction... Photos from the painted wolves will hopefully follow soon when I have the time to visit.
And the zoo is not dog-friendly.
For more information, see website.
New Forest Wildlife Park (Ashurst, Southampton)
Last visit: 13 December 2015.
Wolves: Grey wolves (Timber Wolves), 2 males and 3 females, born at Colchester Zoo in 2010.
Enclosure: The enclosure is comparatively large with numerous trees and additional features.
Photographs: it is rather difficult to take good photos due to the mesh fencing.
Feeding and/or Wolf Keeper Talk: daily at 3.30pm (feeding on selected days)
The wildlife park is not dog-friendly.
For more information: see website.