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Update on wolves recovered in Genoa and Savona and released with GPS radio collars

1 February 2024

On the morning of 24 January, the Regione Liguria environmental wildlife monitoring unit was alerted to the presence of an alleged wolf in the gardens of the former ‘Pastorino’ hospital in Genoa Bolzaneto, which houses various ASL 3 Genovese facilities open to the public.

Once on site, the operators confirmed that it was an adult wolf, visibly frightened and looking for a way out. Most probably during the night, the animal had descended into the valley from the wooded areas above the A7 motorway, seeking refuge from the traffic in the gardens surrounding the health facility. With the help of the ASL 3 veterinarians, the animal was then sedated and placed in a transport cage at a veterinary practice to ascertain its physical condition.

The wolf, an adult male about 2 years old and weighing about 30 kg, was fitted with a GPS collar and immediately released in the high hills of the Genoa area. Thanks to the GPS collar, it will therefore be possible to monitor its movements and check whether it belongs to herds in the area. Already in the morning after the release, the movement data confirmed the success of the operations: the wolf moved westwards, in an impervious and wild area.

Speaking of movement data, the monitoring of the wolf recovered in March 2023 in via Firenze in Savona continues, we talked about it HERE. The wolf, a male of about 3 years old, was released into the wild, equipped with a GPS radio-collar in July 2023, after recovering from a compound fracture of the right femur suffered in the fall. Since then, the animal has continued to move, first going west, crossing into France, and then returning to Italy on the Piedmont side. The wolf then returned almost to the point of release and then back again towards the west. It is currently in Piedmont, but continues to move. An extremely interesting fact is that the animal, captured in an urban context (it had been trapped inside a small courtyard, probably by falling from an overhanging roof), once released, no longer showed any tendency to frequent man-made environments, keeping in its movements as much as possible in wild areas and at high altitudes, feeding on wildlife.

This confirms the fact that wolves found within an urban environment, perhaps in distress like these two males recovered in Savona and Genoa, are not necessarily confidant or urban animals, but may have ended up accidentally trapped there in the course of their explorations.