Investigating the Link Between Personality & Problem-Solving in Captive Gray Wolves

HOT off the launch pad: We just launched a campaign with UC Davis to raise funds for our gray wolf personality & problem-solving study 🐺
Paw-lease consider making a donation today and spread the word!

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Working with our collaborators at Oakland Zoo and the California Wolf Center, we will 1) evaluate the personality of gray wolves living in packs, 2) determine individual differences in problem-solving strategies, and 3) explore the relationship between personality and problem-solving strategies among wolves.

Investigating how wolf personality may relate to response to novelty and performance in cognitive challenges can provide “paw-sitive” impacts across multiple areas of study including the following:

  • Advance animal welfare at the individual level through a research-based understanding of how an individual’s personality may predict their ability to cope with changes in their environment.
  • Support conservation efforts by identifying which individuals could be the best candidates for reintroduction based on personality.
  • Enhance the public’s understanding of wolves as a critical keystone species and highlight the welfare of wolves to bolster visitor learning experiences at zoos and sanctuaries.
  • Guide the development of non-lethal livestock protection methods in rangeland operations through a better understanding of the fear of, attraction towards, or habituation to environmental stimuli.

Our goal is to raise $5,000 to purchase the essential materials to build novel stimuli and puzzle boxes to accomplish our research goals. As the project is entering into its first year, your support will help make this project come to life. We appreciate your generosity and look forward to sharing project updates with you!

Photo by Yasmeen Ghavamian