Watch above: The Valley Zoo has welcomed a new animal; one very few people get to see because of where it lives. Vinesh Pratap reports.
EDMONTON – On Friday, the Edmonton Valley Zoo introduced Tundra, a two-year-old Arctic wolf, to the public.
He joins Shilah, the zoo’s current Arctic wolf, who is seven years old.
The zoo wanted another wolf to keep Shilah company after the death of her sister last summer.
Tundra has been in Edmonton since the end of January; however, it was only earlier this week that he was allowed into Shilah’s enclosure.
WATCH: Arctic wolves Tundra and Shilah
The two are now living together peacefully, according to Wade Krasnow, the Animal Care Team Leader.
“Looking for another Arctic wolf the same sub species as Shilah was a little bit tricky because there aren’t very many in the world in zoos.”
Tundra was born in captivity and was brought to the city from Natura Artis Magistra in Amsterdam. The process to bring him to Edmonton took around five months.
The Valley Zoo has spent months working on acclimating Tundra to his environment and Shilah.
“They had access through the mesh inside the building, so they knew who each other were, so they were comfortable with each other,” said Krasnow. “We had a bunch of zookeepers here if anything went wrong, and then we opened the door.”
The two wolves took some time to get used to each other after initially keeping to themselves, but are now comfortable together and are getting along well.
Krasnow said the zoo didn’t bring Tundra in specifically to mate, although they’re not against the idea.
“If they have some romance in the future it would be a bonus.”
Currently Tundra is implanted to make him infertile, but according to Krasnow, that will wear off within a year.
The species has a life span of seven to 10 years in the wild but can live to an average of 18 in captivity.
Arctic wolves are the only sub species of the wolf not considered threatened by the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF).