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Arctic Wolf Facts: Lesson for Kids

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Instructor: Rebecca Gillaspy

Dr. Gillaspy has taught health science at University of Phoenix and Ashford University and has a degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic.

How would you like to live where the temperature is below zero and the sky is dark for many months out of the year? This is the life of the fierce and beautiful Arctic wolf. Learn about Arctic wolves and how they survive their extreme environment. Updated: 01/27/2021

What Is an Arctic Wolf?

Not many people get to see Arctic wolves in the wild. That's because these animals live in extreme environments, where it's too cold for humans to thrive. An Arctic wolf is a white sub-species of wolf that lives in the Arctic, where there's snow on the ground all year round and temperatures can drop to minus 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Luckily, their bodies are prepared for these harsh temperatures.

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  • 0:04 What is an Arctic Wolf?
  • 0:29 What Do They Look Like?
  • 0:57 Where Do They Live?
  • 1:27 What Do They Eat?
  • 1:51 What is Their Life Cycle?
  • 2:36 Lesson Summary
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What Do They Look Like?

An Arctic wolf wears two coats! The coat closest to its body acts as a waterproof jacket and helps to keep it dry. The outer coat is thick and furry, which helps the wolf stay warm, and is white, like the snowy environment in which it lives.

An Arctic Wolf Staying Warm
Arctic Wolf

The wolves have short ears, noses, and legs. These short features help prevent heat loss, so their core body temperature can stay high enough to withstand the bitter cold.

Where Do They Live?

The Arctic wolf calls the Arctic Circle home. The Arctic Circle is an imaginary line drawn around the top of the Earth. Parts of Alaska, Northern Canada, and Greenland are above the Arctic Circle, so you'll find Arctic wolves living in or near these places.

Arctic wolves can live alone but usually live together in groups called packs. A pack might contain five to seven wolves, but larger packs can be formed, depending on how much food is in the area.

An Arctic Wolf Taking a Walk
Arctic Wolf

What Do They Eat?

Arctic wolves are carnivores, which means they only eat meat. When Arctic wolves hunt in packs, they can capture larger animals, like caribou. They might also go after musk oxen, which look like furry buffaloes with swooping horns on their heads. The wolves also eat smaller animals, like the Arctic fox, Arctic hares, lemmings, seals, and birds.

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