Wolf Hunting in Russia
The habitat of the wolf covers huge territories from the western borders of Russia to the shores of the Pacific Ocean, and from the Arctic Tundra to the steppes of Kazakhstan and Mongolia. This is the most wide spread large game animal in Russia. The population of wolf has been stable for years, and in some areas has increased, causing damage to game and livestock.
Wolves found in Russia can be much more aggressive towards humans than those in North America. There have been verifiable reports of wolves attacking humans in Russia. The largest animals, found in the North Eastern tundra, may reach 2 meters (just under 7 ft.) from the tip of the nose to the tip of the tail and weigh up to 100 kg. (220 lb.).
Hunting this intelligent, wary and highly adaptable animal is very difficult. Many trophies are taken by chance encounter. Organized wolf hunts frequently rely on baiting and calling. In the areas, where wolves numbers become unmanageable, helicopters or snowmobiles can be used. However, the most exciting wolf hunting is done in the European part of Russia in an old tradition, which is not well-known in other countries. When the pack is located, it is encircled with a 3-5 km. (2-3 mi.) long tether, having small swatches of fabric (the “flags”) stitched to it every few feet. The fabric is usually of red color to be easier spotted over the background of snow by the guides Since it retains a human scent for several days, wolves tend to stay within the encircled area. When the hunters arrive, the pack of wolves is already “flagged”. Therefore, the hunt must begin immediately. Preparation takes a great deal of footwork, but the success rate is very high. Four to five hunting days are usually sufficient.
The wolf season is opened year around, but the best time is January-February. January wolf hunts can be combined with driven wild boar hunts.