The two maned wolves at Animal Discovery were matched together by the MWSSP® to promote genetic diversity. The female wolf, Lana, has a very laid back, calm, and playful personality. She was raised by her parents, but also had enough contact with her keepers growing up to make her more comfortable around human caretakers as well. We hope that those things will make her an excellent zoo mother if the opportunity arises. The male wolf, Nazca, is fairly calm, but likes to "talk" and make sure that we know that he only does what he wants to. Both Lana and Nazca are doing well in our operant conditioning training program. This training program allows us to more easily manage the wolves and monitor their health, while reducing any stress that they may experience. Using positive reinforcement, we are able to get the wolves to choose to cooperate with us to earn a treat (mice or fish). During Lana's possible pregnancy, we will ask her to step up onto a scale for a weekly weight. In order to get an accurate weight, she must stand completely on the scale and hold "still" long enough for the scale to register a solid reading.
Today, Lana stepped up onto the scale, but didn't stay on it long enough for a solid reading. We did, however, take a photo of her from the side so that we can eventually look for changes in her body. Again, it is hard to confirm a pregnancy using weights and baby bumps, but we will try to use them as clues nonetheless. We are able to separate Nazca into a different holding area while we weigh Lana to avoid interference or competition.