Ah, I see you brought your friends!
He man, what’s up? Actually, they are not only my friends, it is my family! People call us a wolf pack, and we are usually with about five to eight wolves together. In my wolf pack, my parents are the boss, so annoying. They decide where we go and what we do. I’m helping them take care of my younger brothers and sisters. I really hope to be the boss of my own wolf pack sometime, I can’t wait to I grow up.
You look a bit skinny though, do you parents take good care of you?
Sure! Have you ever seen a fat wolf? I prefer to be slim and strong, just like my dad. And I need to, because otherwise I will not be invited to join the hunt. I mean, most of the time we eat deer, but those guys are fast! Our family needs to work together to catch one. And in case I will be travelling, I normally walk more than 50 kilometres a day. There is just no time to get fat in my life.
How do you like Europe so far?
Well, my dad says it’s better than it used to be several years ago, but it could be better. It seems that almost everywhere we go, people do not want us. I’ve lost many cousins and uncles because people killed and poached them. Now that your so-called laws protect us, I have more than 20,000 friends across the continent. It’s okay for a start. I mean, there are 1,7 million roe deer in Europe. Talking about overpopulation…
But it is a great place for you, right?
Yes, I love Europe! We used to be in every country way back when. Actually, my family was the most widespread on earth once. But humans hunted us down and we came this close to disappear forever. There is enough space for me in Europe. I am quite flexible, as long as there is enough to eat. And there are so many ungulates in Europe that nature is actually suffering from it. So, we like to help nature a bit, take out the weak and sick animals and restore nature’s balance. We are just doing nature a favour!
Should we also worry about our livestock?
Well, I sure like a piece of lamb. But it has become more difficult for me to get my paws on one. These humans came up with all kinds of protection measures. You see more and more electric fences, and these nasty guard dogs. I rather think twice before trying to get past them. I would prefer another deer before getting my ass toasted with 5000 Volts and a grumpy barking welcome committee.
But what happens if you come near humans?
I am quite curious, humans are funny creatures. But I don’t like getting close to humans. It’s not worth the risk. If you just leave me alone, I will just walk away again. Just don’t feed me! People should also take their responsibility to stay away from me. As long as you leave me alone, I will not interfere with your life.
People think that you will behave unnaturally when you are close to humans.
What is unnaturally? If I behave how I behave, isn’t that my nature? Let’s be realistic, you think we are vicious monsters, or that we dress up like Little Red Riding Hood’s grandmother. Have you seen your own kind, dressing up during carnival? And how you cut down all those trees around my forest. Now that is unnatural behaviour!
What about your relatives, the stray dogs, are they causing problems?
Yes, I often underestimate how many dogs are released into nature by people. They have to eat too, you know. In these eastern European countries, you find stray dogs quite a lot. I’ve seen them taking down a bison in Romania actually. And people can’t really tell if we killed an animal or the stray dogs. But guess who gets blamed for it? Right, we do…
Okay, something else. It seems you like travelling, why is that?
Oh yes, I love travelling. My older brothers, clearly hitting puberty, took off from our family. They wanted to find another wolf girl somewhere and start their own family. At that point, just like when my parents found each other, they settle down. I wonder where I will find my life partner. I mean, looking for love can be difficult sometimes. No wonder that my uncle Slavco travelled all the way from Slovakia to Italy before this ‘Romeo’ found his Juliette.
So where will you travel when you grow up?
I don’t know yet. This whole EU-thing with open borders does not really apply to me. Every country has other rules and regulations, it is so confusing for me. If they just let me walk around and I can eat a deer once in a while, I don’t bother anybody. Wouldn’t you say that is a great solution?