Muzzle Bite!

Muzzle Bite!
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    As featured on the Photo of the Day page on March 28, 2002:

    I decided to walk over to Eastlake to take some photos of the wolves over there in the remains of the snow. On the way Seneca and Marion followed and then started to rally a bit. As they headed over toward Tristan, he was obviously not happy for as it turned out he had carried a piece of meat over to the East side of the enclosure and Marion's presence was NOT welcome.

    Such muzzle biting is highly ritualized though and does not really hurt (I know, I've put my hand in there out of curiosity). However, Seneca (who's legs you can see in the background) was not happy with Tristan being so bold in front of him so right after this photo was taken; Tristan was on the receiving end...

    I shot this through the fence. By placing the lens right up against the wire, it turned out OK.

    Location : Wolf Park
    Format : Digital
    Camera : Nikon D1x

    032204b gray wolf wolves social interaction muzzle biting dominance submissive grin teeth behavior ritualized aggression