Video: Emotional Overload on Encountering a Coastal Wolf

Candice Gaukel Andrews December 8, 2016 7
Coastal wolves inhabit one of the last places on the planet where a wild forest meets a wild ocean. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo Wild.

Coastal wolves inhabit one of the last places on Earth where wild forests meet a wild ocean. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo WILD

Almost every single one of you has had that “nature moment”; the instant when an animal encounter or a sighting of a natural landscape or phenomenon takes your breath away. The power of those brief minutes is so strong that you remember them for the rest of your life. If you’re very lucky, you may get to experience more than one of these special occurrences. Rarely, however, are you able to capture your feelings on camera.

That’s why the short video below is so compelling. In it, we see British filmmaker and wildlife cameraman Bertie Gregory observing a coastal wolf for the first time.

When hunting for food, coastal wolves can swim miles between islands to feast on seals and animal carcasses found on rocks. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo Wild

When hunting for food, coastal wolves can swim for miles between islands. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo WILD

Smaller than their inland cousins, coastal wolves once roamed much of the West Coast. Today, they’re found only in British Columbia and southeastern Alaska, where their lives depend entirely on the sea. In fact, their genes prove they’re unique; coastal wolves have distinct DNA that sets them apart from interior wolves.

Up to 90 percent of a coastal wolf’s diet comes from the ocean. These canids are practically pescatarians, with salmon accounting for nearly a quarter of their diet. They also forage on barnacles, clams, herring eggs, river otters, seals and whale carcasses. The body of one dead whale can feed a family of wolves for a week.

Bertie Gregory received an oversupply of joy after encountering a coastal wolf. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo Wild

Bertie Gregory received an oversupply of joy after spotting a coastal wolf. ©From the video “Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter,” Nat Geo WILD

Watch the six-minute video below, published on November 9, 2016, by Nat Geo WILD and titled Rare Coastal Wolf: A Filmmaker’s Emotional Encounter. In it, you’ll recognize that pure moment of joy you get when you have a rare chance meeting with a wild animal. In this case, Bertie Gregory calls his coastal wolf sighting the “single most incredible wildlife encounter I’ve ever had.” He adds, “It’s been an emotional overload.”

After viewing the video, let me know in the comments section below why you can relate to Bertie’s adventure and emotions. When was “that moment” for you?

Here’s to finding your true places and natural habitats,

Candy

7 Comments »

  1. Justin Davis December 20, 2016 at 9:22 am -

    Are you kidding me! Awesome!

  2. Bob Johnston December 12, 2016 at 8:38 am -

    phenomenal!

  3. Phillip Tureck December 9, 2016 at 2:06 am -

    Seeing wolves in the wild in Yellowstone for the first time in 2009 was just too emotional for me.

    My feelings for an animal that I had followed and loved since being young was all too consuming.

  4. whitepine December 8, 2016 at 11:33 pm -

    You are so right. Seeing that special animal is remembered forever. I choked up when I saw my first wild wolf in Yellowstone and when I saw, at a great distance, a wild wolf in British Columbia. I have blurry pictures of both episodes. And I was lucky enough to be with you when these sightings were made! But it doesn’t have to be a big animal to make an impression. I still remember vividly the first time is saw an American Dipper jumping in and out of a cold rushing stream.

    • Candice Gaukel Andrews December 12, 2016 at 8:37 am -

      I agree, white pine! It certainly doesn’t have to take a big animal to make a lasting impression. Sometimes, it’s the small things that “speak” to us the most. —C.G.A.

  5. Travis December 8, 2016 at 9:37 am -

    Mine was seeing a brown bear and two cubs in Yosemite. They seemed so close, although they were very far away. I felt the same way!

    • Candice Gaukel Andrews December 8, 2016 at 10:52 am -

      Travis, I know that feeling well! Thanks for the comment.—C.G.A.