Chuck Ripper (American, B. 1929) “Grey Wolf Howling” Signed lower left. Original Gouache/Watercolor painting on Masonite.
Provenance: Collection of James A. Helzer (1946-2008), Founder of Unicover Corporation.
This artwork was originally published on the Fleetwood First Day Cover for the United Nations S7 Grey Wolf stamp issued March 3, 1993.
At one time the lonely, spine-chilling howls of wolves echoed through all the world’s forests north of the equator. Today wolves roam a tiny portion of their former range. Grey Wolves — often called timber wolves — once wandered throughout the woods, prairies and grasslands of North America. Hunted to near extinction, these magnificent beasts are today relegated to Alaska, Canada and Minnesota, although a few isolated packs survive in Michigan and Wisconsin. The Endangered Species Act protects Grey Wolves in the lower 48 states, but they are still hunted from airplanes in Alaska. Grey Wolves will eat nearly anything — birds, fish, reptiles, even fruit. However, their survival depends on large animals such as deer, caribou, elk and moose. A pack of wolves may chase a caribou herd for miles, waiting for a sick or aged animal to fall behind, whereupon they quickly and efficiently dispatch it. Every wolf pack includes two dominant wolves known as the alpha male and female. The dominant male leads the pack, while the female takes charge of other females and young males. The leaders choose when to hunt and are usually first to eat after a kill. Most often they are the only members of the pack to mate and bear young. However, the entire pack takes part in raising the pups, bringing them food and protecting them when the parents are hunting. That wolves continue to survive, despite the relentless persecution inflicted upon them, is testimony to their extraordinary fortitude.
Image Size: 14.5 x 12.75 in.
Overall Size: 17.75 x 14.75 in.