The Ethiopian wolf is one of the rarest and most endangered canid in the world and is currently protected by Ethiopian law. Total population under 1,000 individuals. The Bale Mountains National Park supports the only known population of any size estimated at 500 to 600 individuals.
The Ethiopian Wolf resembles coyotes in both size and structure. The Ethiopian Wolf stands 2 feet high from the shoulder down. Head and body length is around 4 feet, and its tail length is approximately 12 inches. Males are usually larger than females. Males weigh 30-40 pounds, while females weigh 20-30 pounds. The Ethiopian Wolf has long legs and a long muzzle. Their ears stand straight up and piont forward. They have a bright reddish coat with white on the throat, neck, and underparts. The underside of the tail also is white on the inner half and black towards the outside half. They have short white hairs on the inside of their legs with an thick insulation providing underfur that helps protect against freezing tempatures. Coat and other markings change with age. Females are usually not as brightly colored as the males.The Ethiopian wolf, also known as the Abyssinian Wolf or Simien Jackal, is believed by some scientists not to be a true wolf. However, DNA studies show it to be more closely related to gray wolves and coyotes than to any other African canines. It is the most endangered canine species in Africa, and, among wolves, its rarity is second only to the red wolf.There is believed to be fewer than 450 alive in the wild.The largest concentration of Ethiopian wolves exist in the Bale Mountains National Park. The people living in the Bale Mountains own on average 2 dogs per household in order to protect their livestock.By nature, the Ethiopian wolf hunts by day, but it is found to sometimes be nocturnal in areas where it is persecuted. Though they live in packs which share and defend their territories, they almost always hunt alone. Rodents make up over 90% of their diet, but they occasionally feed on small antelopes, hares, and hyraxes.The only real predators other than humans are spotted hyenas and tawny eagles that occasionally prey on unattended pups. Life span in the wild is about 8 to 10 years.