Written by our Director, Tsa Palmer.
It with great sadness that we announce that Mai our wonderful ambassador wolf was put to sleep due to old age this week, two weeks short of her 16th birthday. She was the oldest wolf we have ever had in our care. She was born at the Dartmoor Wildlife Park in April 2006, along with Mosi and Mika. Their den had flooded and they had to be rescued by the staff at Dartmoor. Mai was a Canadian wolf, and her ancestors came from the Mackenzie River watershed area. She originally lived with Torak and Mosi but was deposed by her sister in 2010.
So Motomo was brought from Devon as her mate, and she gave birth to cubs Nuka Tundra and Tala in 2011 who continue to live at the Trust.
In her hey day Mai was a stunning looking wolf with a luxuriant silver-grey coat who was known for her gentle nature and enjoying being around people. She together with Mosi and Torak were our showcase ambassador wolves for well over a decade, allowing thousands of visitors to the Trust to get close to them and helping change peoples entrenched perceptions about wolves. So many people have had wonderful experiences of meeting them. She was the wolf we took out on childrens' events until her retirement at 13 years old and the Trust closed. It really is the end of an era with the passing of Mai. She had an exceptional nature. We will sorely miss her but are comforted in the knowledge that she had a long fulfilling and happy life here at the Trust and was much loved.
Motomo and she were a devoted couple and although she did continue to come out for walks without him, with her favourite handlers, she was always keen to get back. We know he will miss her very much so we will be keeping a close eye on him.