How to Track a Pack
While searching for articles to blog about this week, I came across an article related to wolves and how one tracks a wolf pack. As a resident of New Hampshire, I have come to appreciate the eeriness that only a howl or hoot in the middle of the night can produce and the alarm I feel whenever I hear the crunch of dry leaves or the cries of wild animals. While I admire animals, I also fear them, particularly wolves, due to their ability to maintain hidden until they wish to be found. However, tracking these elusive creatures has become the mission of wolf-tracker Isaac Babcock due to his quest to track the Lookout pack living in the Cascade Range of mountains. By studying how wolves communicate and typical pack behavior, Babock believes he can effectively locate the Lookout pack that vanished in recent years through a human tracker device he created to mimic the cries of wolves. Babcock explains that through a combination of growls, barks, whines and howls, he will be able to entice the wolves into communicating and eventually seeking the impersonated wolf howls.
Wolves are excellent trackers and hunters by nature and the opportunity to study their habits and communication abilities will be a huge accomplishment for Babcock and his team. Babcock believes that watching the wolves in such intimate settings through video recordings has the “power to change the way the species [is] viewed.” Ultimately, by using science to create devices that mimic animal cries and other tracking methods, scientists are finding animals that don’t want to be found. Although these advances allow scientists to research and understand certain animals better, this article makes me question if more harm than good will come out of this. For example, poachers could track certain animals down easier or the imitation of animal cries could confuse the actual animals and lure them away from their legitimate pack to a fake pack. I believe that some of nature’s secrets are meant to remain hidden, and by creating machines that imitate the cry of certain animals, those secrets might be discovered. What do you think? Do you believe humans should know all the secrets of the animal kingdom or do you believe that those secrets could be used to harm rather than help creatures?