The million dollar question: how did the wolves react to the eclipse? Wolf Haven was open for sanctuary visits that day, and animal care staff reported that the wolves didn’t even bat an eye. Despite having 94% coverage at the sanctuary it was actually fairly light out, so they may not have even realized it was going on.
It is often said that helping others is a reward in itself and many of those who volunteer at Wolf Haven International would strongly agree. Still, the staff at Wolf Haven never misses an opportunity to thank those who spend their time and energy trying to aid in their efforts to increase understanding, appreciation and conservation of wolves.
One way Wolf Haven expresses its appreciation is by hosting a yearly Volunteer Appreciation event. The event varies from year to year; however, this summer volunteers and their guests were invited to a barbecue at the sanctuary. The festivities began with viewings of a special video made honoring the wolves who have passed away in the previous year, giving volunteers a chance to say goodbye to the animals they have cherished, many since their first days at the Haven. The video also introduced newly added residents, such as the four Mexican gray and eight red wolf pups born this Spring.
Afterwards, guests donned disposable gloves and dug deep into buckets of hot dog bits, venison biscuits, and clam chunks. Don’t be too alarmed by the spread – these delicacies were layered into cups and frozen into popsicles to be given out to the wolves as a delicious summer treat. The real feast came after, when everyone (the humans, that is), gathered for an outdoor picnic, enjoying a light summer breeze and each other’s company.
The event ended with stories from volunteers depicting their experiences at Wolf Haven, and heartfelt expressions of gratitude from staff. During the speeches, the wolves added their own voices as they collectively sang out, reminding each of us of the cause that continues to bring us all together.
Could you be a Wolf Haven volunteer? Want to learn more? Send an email to Wolf Haven’s Director of Volunteer Services, Cindy Irwin, at email@example.com.
by Faye Peebles
Education Coordinator, Wolf Haven International
As we set up our table, very much as if we are at a booth event or our own docent table back at Wolf Haven, people start coming down the gravel path from the parking lot. We are in one corner of the large opening. In the center is a round fire pit with benches four deep on all sides. In the corner opposite are two tables end to end with the makings of Campfire Cones on them.
You may be asking what is a Campfire Cone? It is a common Girl Scout campfire treat. How do I know this (aside from being a Girl Scout myself)? Chris, Pam, and I are at Girl Scouts of Western Washington’s (GSWW) center in Dupont, Washington. We are guest speakers at the second Fireside Friday of this summer. GSWW-Dupont began Fireside Fridays as a way to bring environment-related learning to Girl Scout families in a fun way and get some use out of their fire pit. The purpose of Wolf Haven’s presence is to talk about being safe while recreating in carnivore country and briefly talk about what to do in the event of an encounter with wildlife.
As families, GSWW volunteers and staff come in, they greet those they know and then the kids get excited. They see our table full of skulls, the life-size coyote and gray wolf standees, and our Camping with Carnivores sign.
Before we know it, the group’s attention is being called for and the campfire is starting. After a welcome from the lead volunteer and a couple of campfire songs, (yes, Chris, Pam, and I participated to the best of our ability), we get started.
Moving among our guests, we ask the group to be skull detectives with us. An animal’s skull can tell us what types of food it eats, which sense is most important for survival, and roughly its size. Paw prints, along with the skull information, help the group identify the animals, all of which are native to Washington.
With a general understanding of the carnivores in our state, we take the group through a lesson in responsible hiking/camping/recreating and then demonstrate the good vs. bad ways to react if a person comes upon wildlife.
Finally, we are able to enjoy the Campfire Cones as more questions are asked and answered (incidentally, a campfire cone is a waffle cone filled with marshmallows, chocolate, sprinkles, peanuts, etc., wrapped in foil and heated over a fire for a short time. Everything melts together and you enjoy like an ice cream cone.) Overall, a great time is had by all, including these three Wolf Haven staff.
Editor’s Note: Faye is too modest to mention this in her blog post, but she was recently selected as a Girl Scout Woman of Distinction. She received the award from two ambassador Girl Scouts at a May 4 ceremony in Tacoma, WA.
We are sorry to announce that the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has taken lethal action in an effort to change the depredating behavior of the Smackout wolf pack, located in the northeastern part of Washington State. This pack has preyed on domestic cattle five times since September 2016, despite the many preventative efforts taken to deter them.
by Kim Young, Director of Communications, Wolf Haven International
photographs taken by Melissa Poinsett for Wolf Haven
Wolf Haven International launched “Wolves & Wine” in 2011 with the intention of making it our premiere fundraising event combined with our annual meeting. We wanted to create an evening where supporters could learn more about Wolf Haven’s recent accomplishments and future plans, and at the same time raise much-needed funds for our nonprofit sanctuary. We hoped it would offer wolf and wildlife advocates and supporters an opportunity to come together in a relaxed, comfortable surrounding. But above all, we wanted it to be FUN!
If you want to guarantee a successful adult event, it helps enormously to have excellent food and drink available in a convivial atmosphere. We had that covered from the beginning by offering wine tastings from a variety of vintners and delicious heavy hors d’oeuvres served by Bon Appetit catering at The Norman Worthington Conference Center of Saint Martin’s University. The stellar planning committee also believed that a silent and a live auction would be the ideal avenue for us to raise money in support of our mission: conserve and protect wolves and their habitat.
We could sell all manner of wolf-related items: jewelry, custom-made cabinets, paintings, books, etc. as well as more generalized things like a package get-away week-end or sports tickets. The key to the success of the auction, however, was going to hang not only the generosity of our guests, but also on having just the right auctioneer at the helm.
The Perfect Fit – Jeff Kingsbury
We found the ideal company and candidate in Stokes Auction Group and Jeff Kingsbury. Jeff is an actor and director who specializes in musical theatre. His work has taken him all over the country and he has appeared in over 150 plays and musicals. Given his background in the theatre, it isn’t uncommon for Jeff to break into song during an evening’s event. He has a quick and warm wit, and a phenomenal memory for names.
Jeff is a master at “driving” an incredibly fun, fast-paced evening. He encourages bidding auction items, but without pressure (well, not too much). After having Jeff Kingsbury as our Wolves & Wine auctioneer for the past several years, we can guarantee that by the end of the night, your mouth will hurt and your stomach will ache from laughing so hard. He feels a compassion and commitment to Wolf Haven’s mission and always strives to ensure that Wolves & Wine is a success. We truly hope you will join us on September 30, 2017 for the seventh annual Wolves & Wine – and Wolf Haven’s 35th anniversary! PURCHASE TICKETS HERE.
More About Jeff
As an auctioneer, Jeff has helped raise funds for the American Heart Association, Colorado Epilepsy Foundation, The Pacific Symphony (Orange County), The Amarillo Symphony, and many deserving organizations in addition to Wolf Haven.
Stokes Auction Group
The company, located in Edgewood, Washington specializes in supporting non-profit agencies and charitable causes in reaching their fundraising goals. Their team provides seminars, pre-event consulting, on-site support, professional auctioneers, bid spotters and materials to support your event. They serve groups of all sizes in their efforts to achieve financial success.
Our Media Sponsor for this year’s event is South Sound Magazine. Look for our Wolves & Wine ad in their September issue!
At 17, Diablo defied the odds- most wolves never live to see their 10th birthday let alone their 17th – so we knew that we were on borrowed time. We realized that eventually his age would catch up with him and the day would come when we would need to say goodbye. That day came on Sunday, June 25.
Until nearly the end, Diablo enjoyed good quality of life. He had some age-related challenges; he had become hard of hearing, his vision wasn’t as sharp and he had generalized stiffness and weakness. This was particularly pronounced in his back-end, especially if he laid in the same spot for a long time and then tried to get up. All things considered, though, he was as spry as a 17 year-old wolf could be.
Diablo was immediately identifiable because of the twin notches in his ears. He was born at a zoo in Detroit, where it is believed that the notches were caused by sibling squabbles. Diablo came to live at Wolf Haven in 2004 when he was three years old.
A Mexican gray wolf, Diablo was a participant in a federally managed Species Survival Plan program designed to preserve the survival and health of this critically endangered subspecies of the gray wolf. His longstanding companion was Gypsy, a female Mexican wolf. Because their enclosure was on the public visitor route, over the years hundreds of people were privileged to see the beauty and unique coloration of this rare breed. Beyond this, though, visitors could bear witness to a bonded pair that carried themselves with dignity and grace.
Diablo was a teacher to us in so many ways and he undoubtedly touched everyone who encountered him. We were fortunate to have had the opportunity to care for him all these years but there is definitely a void in the sanctuary, not only for his longtime companion Gypsy, but for all of us.
Rest in peace sweet Diablo.
Lovingly written by Wendy Spencer and Kim Young
Wolf Haven International invites you to participate in one of our popular wolf photography visits. Photo visits are held during colder months, when the wolves are wearing their winter coats and are more active. The program begins at 8:00 am with a continental breakfast and brief presentation. The group will take photographs in the wolf sanctuary from 9 am – noon.
Wolf Haven’s annual fall fundraiser and annual meeting, Wolves & Wine, will be held on Saturday, September 30 from 5-8 pm at Saint Martin’s University – Norman Worthington Conference Center in Lacey, WA.
Driving south from Tacoma to Portland, just ten minutes out of exit 101 there is a very special place. A place different from anything you have heard of. A place full of peace and with some beautiful inhabitants: a wolf sanctuary surrounded by a blooming prairie.
Manejando hacia el sur, de Tacoma a Portland, a sólo diez minutos de la salida 101 hay un lugar muy especial. Un lugar
diferente a todo lo que hayas conocido. Un lugar lleno de paz y con unos habitantes hermosos: un santuario de lobos rodeado de una pradera floreciente.
Wolf Haven by Diane Mivelli
Why they do it is unclear. When they do it is unpredictable. Once one resident at Wolf Haven International begins howling, the others soon join in. The singular occasion can last mere minutes, yet it will live on in the memory of any visitor.