Himalayan Wolf (Canis himalayensis)


All information from the Himalayan Wolves Project

Himalayan Wolf same as Tibetan Wolf 

Common Names:

Overall population: declining

Physical description:

Original range –
Current range – Nepalese Himalayas and high altitudes of the Tibetan plateau, Indian Himalayas and a few hybridized with grey wolves in Kyrgyzstan. Bhutan.

Habitat / Ecology / Prey:
Habitat –
Prey-  Kiang (Equus kiang), Himalayan blue sheep “bharal” “naur” (Pseudois nayaur), Argali (Ovis ammon), Tibetan gazelle “goa” (Procapra picticaudata), Stoliczka’s mountain vole (Alticola stoliczkanus), Himalayan marmot (Marmota himalayana), woolly hare (Lepus oiostolus), plateau pika (Ochotona curzoniae)

Non-prey – Snow leopard “ounce” (Panthera uncia), Red fox (Vulpes vulpes), Tibetan “sand” fox (Vulpes ferrilata)

Unique behaviors:

Legal and Cultural Background:


Himalayan Wolves Project

Taxonomic/Genetic Information:

“a genetic adaptation to cope with the hypoxic stresses in the high altitude habitats”


Further Reading

Journal / Scientific Publications:

Western Himalayan Forests in Climate Change Scenario
A Roy, P Rathore – Remote Sensing of Northwest Himalayan Ecosystems, 2019 – Springer

Understanding Public Perceptions to Carnivores: Examining Communities in Upper Mustang, Nepal; A Upraity – 2019 – scholarsbank.uoregon.edu

[HTML] Livestock depredation by snow leopard and Tibetan wolf: Implications for herders’ livelihoods in Wangchuck Centennial National Park, Bhutan
Y Jamtsho, O Katel – Pastoralism, 2019 – pastoralismjournal.springeropen …

[HTML] Snow leopard and Himalayan wolf: food habits and prey selection in the central Himalayas, Nepal; M Chetri, M Odden, P Wegge – PloS one, 2017 – journals.plos.org

Phylogenetic evidence for the ancient Himalayan wolf: towards a clarification of its taxonomic status based on genetic sampling from western Nepal; Geraldine Werhahn, Helen Senn, Jennifer Kaden, Jyoti Joshi, Susmita Bhattarai, Naresh Kusi, Claudio Sillero-Zubiri, and David W. Macdonald; The Royal Society ; Published:01 June 2017

The unique genetic adaptation of the Himalayan wolf to high-altitudes and consequences for conservation; Geraldine Werhahna, Helen Senn, Muhammad Ghazali, DibeshKarmacharya, Adarsh ManSherchan, Jyoti Joshi, Naresh Kusi, José Vincente, López-Bao, Tanya Rosen, Shannon Kachel, Claudio Sillero-Zubiri, David W.Macdonald; Global Ecology and Conservation, October 2018

[PDF] Conservation implications for the Himalayan wolf Canis (lupus) himalayensis based on observations of packs and home sites in Nepal
G Werhahn, N Kusi, C Sillero-Zubiri, DW Macdonald – Oryx, 2017

[HTML] Ancient Himalayan wolf (Canis lupus chanco) lineage in Upper Mustang of the Annapurna Conservation Area, Nepal M Chetri, YV Jhala, SR Jnawali, N Subedi, M Dhakal… – ZooKeys, 2016 – ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

[HTML] Hypoxia adaptations in the grey wolf (Canis lupus chanco) from Qinghai-Tibet Plateau; W Zhang, Z Fan, E Han, R Hou, L Zhang… – PLoS …, 2014 – journals.plos.org