Wolf tracked down after escape near Benoni


In the past few days, residents of Benoni and surrounding smallholdings have been warned to be on their guard after a Canadian gray wolf escaped on a property in the area on New Year’s Eve.

Christo Myburgh of Absolute Exotics SA says they recently rescued the wolf from its previous owners after they were informed that this animal had been neglected and was being mistreated.

“Our company specializes in the trade and breeding of exotic animals, but we also have a rehabilitation program where we take care of neglected and mistreated exotic animals and rehabilitate them.

“We have a wolf ourselves and therefore immediately decided to take the animal in because they thrive in a pack.

“However, this wolf was badly traumatized and with all the fireworks on New Year’s Eve he escaped from the camp,” says Myburgh.

A search was immediately launched. The Benoni police’s dog unit and drones combed the area to locate the wolf and after a long search the wolf was spotted on a farm near Benoni.

“We have a private company that now continuously monitors the wolf. He is currently still on the farm where he was initially spotted; he just moves around there. He was really badly abused and neglected by his previous owners, so he is incredibly afraid of people. He flees all the time.”

Myburgh says they could not get hold of a veterinarian on Monday or Tuesday who was willing to anesthetize the animal and ensure a safe return.

“We only found a vet this morning – otherwise he would have been back with us a long time ago. We still follow him all the time. We know exactly where he is, we just haven’t been able to get hold of him because he keeps running away.”

According to Myburgh, the wolf will soon be sedated by the vet and taken back to his camp.

“We will also make sure that we fence the camp with electric fences, so that the wolf cannot escape again.”