Arabian Wolf (Canis lupus arabs)

By Ahmad Qarmish

Arabian Wolf (Canis lupus arabs) – (Pocock 1934)

Common Names:

Overall population: unknown

Physical description: The Arabian Wolf is small, adapted to the desert environment. Its ears are proportionally larger in relation to its frame to help disperse and release body heat. Typically stands around 26 inches (66 cm) shoulder height and weighs an average of 40 pounds (18.14 kg). The fur of the Arabian Wolf is short and thin in summer but with longer back hairs to help radiat and control the impact of solar heat on their backs. Their winter coats are longer but not as dense and long as the North American or Eurasion Grey wolf. Unlike other grey wolves, the middle two toes of an Arabian wolf’s paws are fused.

Original range – Originally distributed throughout the Arabian Peninsula.
Current range – Small pockets in southern Israel, southern and western Iraq, Oman, Yemen, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and possibly some parts of the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt.

Habitat / Ecology / Prey:
Habitat – desert
Ecology –
Prey – ungulates (domestic and wild) ibexes, Dorcas gazelles, cape hares, rodents, carrion

Unique behaviors: Arabian wolves usually hunt in pairs or in groups of about three or four animals and are unusually known not to howl.

Legal and Cultural Background:

Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (Tel Aviv, Israel)
Nature Iraq (Baghdad and Erbil)
ESO Environmental Society of Oman
The Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature

Taxonomic/Genetic Information:


Further Reading

Journal / Scientific Publications:

Group size and home range of the Arabian wolf (Canis lupus) in southern Israel; R Hefner, E Geffen – Journal of Mammalogy, 1999 –