From: Ireland’s Wildlife
January 19, 2015 by Dan Lettice
Centuries ago wolves roamed the wilds of Ireland. In this full-length feature Ireland’s Wildlife contributor Dan Lettice, explores whether or not, one day, they could do so again….
Could the European grey wolf roam Ireland’s landscapes again? Dan Lettice explores the question (Gunnar Ries [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons)
The grey wolf, Canis lupis, was once reasonably common in Ireland and existed on all parts of the Island. The last wolf in Ireland was probably killed in or around 1786 but small populations or individual wolves may have existed into the early 1800’s. Before English rule in the country wolves were hunted, mainly by the ruling classes, and plenty of wolf skins were exported to Britain, but there seems to have been no coordinated attempt to exterminate them. During English rule this changed, and people…