1916 – Wolves on the peninsula: proof

We walked from Esfigmenou to Karyes, Marouda over the ridge (The Way of the Bey). Mostly monopatia, only a short intermission with a dirt road. The dirtroad overrules the path just after Stavros, where the routes from Esfigmenou and Chilandariou meet (the path to Chilandariou is not on this map). This was May 2017.
There I found these footprints:
My knife is 8,5 centimetres. The left footprint measures 9,5 cm and the right one 11 cm.
According to this plate a wolf’s foot measures 5 inch (12,7 cm). I learned that there is a slight difference between the front leg (3,5 to 5 inch) and the hind leg (3,5 to 4,5 inch).
This map shows the distribution of wolves in Europe:
On the site of the Friends of Mount Athos I read the following story:
‘On December 17, 2015 the following account confirming this advisory was sent in by a
FoMA member to his membership secretary’:
“Before, you had warned me in an e-mail ‘that it is forbidden to spend the night outside
because of wolves.’ As circumstances dictated, I had to do just that. I spent the evening
keeping a vigil down at the water front in an open sided storage building (so the night breeze was coming toward shore from the sea). At 1:30 A.M. I saw a wolf trot by 45 feet away. He couldn’t smell or for that matter see me because of the direction of the breeze. Needless to say, this introduced new ferver into my vigil!”
While investigating this I watched pictures of wolf scat. I’m convinced that I have seen scat like that close to the foot prints, but I did not take a picture. I would like to conclude: it is highly likely, probable, that this is a sound proof of the presence of the wolf here. The lack of domesticated animals, like sheep, goat, or chicken on Athos doesn’t put him off from exploring the Holy Mountain. We didn’t hear the Wolf Howlin.”
Bas Kamps
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