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Interview: Jim & Jamie Dutcher, "The Hidden Life of Wolves

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For more than 20 years, Jim and Jamie Dutcher have focused their lives on the study and documentation of wolf behavior.  They’ve spoken to policymakers, ranchers, conservationists and the general public to better educate them about the true social nature of wolves and why they are so critical to maintaining healthy ecosystems. They also founded a nonprofit, Living With Wolves, which is dedicated to raising awareness about wolves and the threats to their survival.

The Dutchers have worked tirelessly to dispel the ancient myths about wolves as well as modern day myths that portray reintroduced wolves as larger, more aggressive killers of livestock and even humans.

Jim & Jamie Dutcher lived for years in a tented camp among a pack of wolves at the edge of Idaho’s Sawtooth Wilderness, intimately observing the social hierarchy and behavior of the now-famous Sawtooth Pack. Over time, the wolves became comfortable enough with the Dutchers to reveal social bonds and intimate behavior never before documented. These extraordinary experiences led first to a series of films that won three Emmys and now to this groundbreaking book, The Hidden Life of Wolves, which offers a new understanding of wolves through powerful insights, compelling images, timelines, maps and informational sidebars.

Vivid observations detailing the selection of pack leaders, the birth of pups and mourning the loss of a pack member offer new knowledge about wolves, enhanced by photography that brings these behaviors to life. 

To learn more about the Dutchers, their work and the book (National Geographic Books, 2013), visit their website. All photos on our site courtesy of The Hidden Life of Wolves.

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