Park History



Dr. Klinghammer and Two Wolves


Dr. Erich Klinghammer brings two wolves, Koko and Cassie, to his property for ethology research. Koko and Cassie came from the Brookfield Zoo, in Chicago, Illinois.


Endangered Species Act and a Pack of Coyotes

Gray and red wolves are two of the first species placed under federal protections by the Endangered Species Act.

May 9th, John Brown arrived with coytoes Napoleon, Jeanine, Wellington, Greta, and Diane. The coyotes were research subjects for his thesis.


Raising Pups and Pat Arrives

Wolf Park raised its first litter of pups — donated by the Philadelphia Zoo. Viking and Kismet went to a Nature Center and later returned to Wolf Park.

Pat Goodmann comes to the park for her graduate work. (She never leaves.)




Presented at the Annual Animal Behavior Society Meeting in Wilmington, North Carolina


We are Wolf Park


Dr. Klinghammer’s facility officially adopts the name “Wolf Park.” The local residents had been calling the place “The Wolf Farm”. And while “Wolf Research Park” was in the running, the name was finally shortened to what we know today.


First Pups


Our first litter of pups were born on the property. The proud parents were Cassie and Tornado. The litter was two males, Ohtsu and Nishi, and one female, Isa. The litter was left in with the pack with lots of daytime contact with humans. This did not result in wolves well socialized to human and was never tried again.

Presentation: Functional Systems in the Behavior of Wolves (Canis lupus).  Fourth Int. Conf. on Cats and Sociobiology of Carnivores.  March 1977.  Seattle, WA.

Presentation: Social Rank and Mating Behavior in Two Captive Wolf Packs (Canis lupus).  Presented at the Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Pennsylvania State University, College Station, Pa.  June 1977, with Eugene Brantley, Jr.


Dr. Klinghammer’s First Published Paper on Wolves

Klinghammer E. and Laidlaw, L.  1978   Analysis of twenty three months of howl records in a captive pack. P; 153 – 181  In: Klinghammer E (Ed.) Symposium on the Behavior and Ecology of Wolves, Garland Press.

Regional Meeting of the Animal Behavior Society.  Purdue University, 17-19 March 1978.  Co-Organizer with Judy Breuggeman, Dept. of Anthropology, and Peter Waser, Dept. of Biology.

Presentation: Man and Animals: Towards a Sympatric Relationship with Wild Animals.  J.S. Wright Conference, Purdue University.  24 Feb. 1978.

Presentation: Dynamics of Mating Behavior in Male Grey Wolves (Canis lupus).  Animal Behavior Society Meeting, Seattle WA.  June 1978.

Presentation: Ethology in the High School Curriculum.  National Convention of Biology Teachers.  Chicago, IL.  28 Oct. 1978.

Colloquia Lectures:

“Behavior Mechanisms in Wolves.”  Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN.  6 April 1978.

“Dynamics of Mating Behavior in Captive Wolves”.  – Departments of Psychology, Biology, and Anthropology.  Ball State University.  19 December 1978.



Workshop: Research on Wolves in Captivity.

Held at: Portland Wolf Symposium, 15 Aug. 1979

Presentation: Long-Term Effects of Early Experience on the Social Behavior of Grey Wolves.  Portland Wolf Symposium.  16 Aug. 1979, with Pat Goodmann.

Colloquia Lectures:

Monmouth College.  8 and 9 March 1979.  Three Lectures on: “Mating Systems in Wolves”, “Ethology”, and a public lecture on “Behavior and Ecology of Wolves”.  Monmouth, IL.

“Aspects of Wolf Behavior and its Relation to Conservation”.  Biology Department Seminar.  Purdue Calumet Campus.  22 March 1979.Trinity University, San Antonio, Texas.  Lectures in Ethology and Wolf Research and Wolf Research.  5-8 June 1979.

“Early Experience and Social Dynamics in Wolves”.  Laboratory of Ethology, University of Bielefeld, West Germany.  9 July 1979.

“Wolf Lovers – A Split Pack”.  Portland Wolf Symposium.  14 August 1979.

“Behavior Mechanisms in Wolves”.  Department of Zoology, Miami University, Oxford, OH.  7 November 1979.

“Chemical Cues and Social Dynamics in a Captive Wolf Pack”.  Monell Chemical Senses Institute, Philadelphia, PA.  27 Nov. 1979.


Mating Patterns in a Captive Grey Wolf Pack (Canis lupus) During Five Successive Breeding Seasons.  Animal Behavior Society Meeting  Ft. Collins, Co. 10 June 1980, with Pat Goodmann.


Loss of Many and Presentations

1981 is chiefly remembered for the organo-phosphate poisoning incident that winter. We got in a dead bull from a local farmer. The bull had been the victim of a hunting accident and it had indeed been shot. We fed the bull to the wolves. The entire pack became ill. Mica, Bicha, Gemini, Alexa and Sasha all died. From what could be determined, the bull had eaten organo-phosphate and would have died by the poisoning, if he had not been shot by the hunter.

Presentation: Mating Patterns in a Captive Wolf Pack (Canis lupus) During Six Successive Breeding Seasons.  Animal Behavior Society Meeting.  University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN.  22 June 1981.

Presentation: Social Rank and Mating Behavior of a Captive Wolf Pack: A Long-term Study.  Captive Wolf Conference.  U. of Michigan, Flint, MI.  9 Oct. 1981.

Presentation: Wolf and Bison: A Study of Predator-Prey Relations in a Captive Setting.  Captive Wolf Conference.  U. of Michigan, Flint, MI.  9 Oct. 1981.

Presentation: Running for “Higher Office” in a Wolf Pack: Status Contagion by Contiguity.  CAPTIVE WOLF CONFERENCE.  U. of Michigan, Flint, MI.  10 Oct. 1981.

Invited Paper: Group Dynamics and Behavior Mechanisms in the Wolf (Canis lupus).  Sponsored by Joachim Jungius Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften.  University of Hamburg, West Germany.

Colloquia Lecture: “Behavior Mechanisms in Wolves”.  Departments of Psychology and Biology.  Western Ontario University.  London, Ontario.  27 November 1981.



Presentation: The Animal’s Perspective in Applied Ethology.  Animal Behavior Society Meeting.  University of Illinois.  Urbana-Champaign.  13 Feb. 1982.

Colloquia Lectures:

“Principles of Applied Ethology in Wild Animals”.  Lecture-Demonstration held at WOLF PARK for the Applied Ethology Class, Dept. of animal Sciences of Dr. Gonyu, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, IL.  14 March 1982.

“The Application of Ethological Principles in the Handling of Behavior Problems in Dogs,” including demonstrations.  School of Veterinary Medicine.  Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.  19 March 1982.

“Control of Mating Behavior through Social Behavior in Wolves.”  Dept. of Biology.  Indiana State University.  Terre Haute, IN.  6 April 1982.



Colloquia Lectures:

“Wolves and Animal Behavior.”  Three lectures on 8, 17 and 18 July 1983 for YOUNG SCHOLARS PROGRAM, at IUPUI at Indianapolis.

“THE WOLF: FACT AND FICTION.”  Presented at a Symposium on Perceptions of Animals in American Culture.  12-13 November 1983 held at the National Zoological Park, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.



Colloquia Lectures:

Psychology Class of Dr. Barry Kantowitz.  Dept. of Psychological Sciences.  Purdue University.  6 April 1984.

“Ethology and Career Opportunities in Animal Behavior.”  HSSE FOCUS ON COMMUNICATION Campus Outreach Program for High School Students.  Stewart Center, Purdue University.  27 April 1984.

National Association of Biology Teachers Annual Conference held at Purdue University. Lecture: Wolf Research and Conservation. Wolf Howling Communication; Wolf and Bison Interaction.  8 & 9 November 1984.


Invited Paper
Predator-Prey Interaction in Captivity: Wolves (Canis lupus) and American Bison (Bison bison).  Invited paper at Ungulate Behavior Symposium honoring Margaret Altmann.  ANNUAL ANIMAL BEHAVIOR MEETING, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.  13 June 1986.


Many Babies and Publications

sheepand Pups

1987 brought another experiment in multi-species childcare. We had two wolf pups, Onyx and Moose who were going to Wolf Haven in the fall. We also wound up with two lambs to bottle raise and entire litter of coyotes. Too many babies, not enough baby sitters, so…

Klinghammer, E. and Goodmann, P.A. (1987).  Socialization and Management of Wolves in Captivity.  In: MAN AND WOLF, H. Frank, Ed., Dr. W. Junk Publishers.  Kluwer Academic Publisher’s Group.

Albert, C., Goodmann, P.A. and Klinghammer, E. (1987).  Health Care of Wolves in Captivity.  In: MAN AND WOLF, H. Frank, Ed., Dr. W. Junk Publishers.  Kluwer Academic Publisher’s Group.

Klinghammer, E. and Goodmann, P.A.  Summary of a 16 Year Study of the Social dynamics, Mating Behavior, and Success in Caring for Pups in Relation to Social Rank in a Captive Wolf Pack, (Canis lupus).  Presented on 8 August 1987 at the XX INTERNATIONAL ETHOLOGY CONFERENCE held at University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI.

Invited participant in a Workshop on North American Game Markets: Curse or Blessing.  Arranged by V. Geist and H. Frank.  8 August 1987.  XX INTERNATIONAL ETHOLOGY CONFERENCE held at University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI.

Invited participant in WOLF SYMPOSIUM held at the Annual Meeting of the Delta Society in Vancouver, B.C.  Title: Social structure of Wolves in Relation to Management in Captivity.  Also participant in a panel: MAN AND WOLF.5.October 1987.

Invited lecture “The Wolf: Fact and Fiction.” at FOURTH ANNUAL CAPTIVE ANIMAL SYMPOSIUM held at Zoological Society of New Jersey, West Orange, NJ.  10 April 1987.

Colloquium “The Management and Study of Wolves in Captivity.”  School of Veterinary Medicine, Tufts University, North Grafton, MA.  22 April 1987.

Address “Wolves, Bison, and Humans: An Ethological Approach to Behavior Problems.”  Annual Meeting of SIGMA XI, Indiana University Medical Center Chapter.  Lilly Center Auditorium.  7 May 1987.


Symposium, a Goat and Monty Lands

Ericha, or more properly, That *&^@ GOAT! Ericha originally was to be wolf food, along with her mother who was killed by some dogs. But nothing was really wrong with her and nobody had the heart to do her in. She became obnoxious late in life and we regretted that decision many times. We really did love her… well, most of the time, when she wasn’t tap dancing on a car or butting an unsuspecting visitor…we really did love her. Honest.

Invited participant in a SYMPOSIUM ON BEHAVIOR RESEARCH AND CONSERVATION held by the WESTERN PSYCHOLOGICAL ASSOCIATION in San Francisco, CA.  Paper on: Wolf Behavior Research in Relation to Wolf Conservation.  April 1988.

Special Seminar for a class of the Art Institute of Chicago on Artistic and Scientific Perspectives on Behavior.  Held at Ross Studio,Chestertin, IN on 11.April 1988

Monty Sloan arrives from his home planet.


The Wolf: Fact, Fiction Publication and Monty Lands

Publication: Klinghammer, E. (1989) The Wolf: Fact and Fiction.  In PERCEPTIONS OF ANIMALS IN AMERICAN CULTURE.  R.J. Hoage, Ed.  Smithsonian Institution Press.  Washington, D.C.

Presentation: Klinghammer, E. and Goodmann, P.A.  Damaging fights in gray wolves (Canis lupus L.).  Presented at Annual Meeting of the INDIANA ACADEMY OF SCIENCES MEETING in New Albany, IN.  10 Nov. 1989.

Three hour seminar on applied ethology at School of Veterinary Medicine.  University of Pennsylvania., Philadelphia.  3 Oct. 1989


Invited Papers and Lectures

Invited paper: “Wolf-Bison Interactions in Captivity.”  INTERNATIONAL WOLF SYMPOSIUM held in St. Paul, MN.  21 April 1990.

Invited paper: “The Wolf in the Midwest”.  1990 MIDWEST REGIONAL ANIMAL BEHAVIOR SOCIETY CONFERENCE held in Columbus, OH.  29 April, 1990.

“Wolf-Bison Interactions in Captivity”.  Presented at WOLVES AND HUMANS SYMPOSIUM sponsored by The Vancouver Museum and Northwest Wildlife Preservation Society in Vancouver, B.D., Canada.  10 June, 1990.

Invited paper: “Delivery of Veterinary Care to Wolves in Captivity without Psychological Trauma: Ethological and Psychological Considerations.  – 78th ANNUAL VETERINARY CONFERENCE.  Purdue University.  20-21 September, 1990.

“Wolf-Bison Studies at Wolf Park”.  Purdue University Student Chapter of the Wildlife Society.  September, 1990.

“Principles of Behavior Change”.  Presented at Second Annual Workshop for Educators: OVERCOMING PREJUDICE: YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE>  Sponsored by Catholic Schools of Diocese of Lafayette, Lafayette and Tippecanoe School Corporations, West Lafayette Community Schools.  2 April, 1990.

“Social Rank Order in Wolf Packs and Other Social Species (Implications for Human Adaptiveness to Changing Situations)”.  Presented at Institute for Naval Analysis, Washington, D.C.  17 May, 1990.

“Ethological Studies at Wolf Park, Indiana, U.S.A.” (In German).  Held at Academy of Sciences of the German Democratic Republic in East Berlin.  5 July 1990

Guest lecture on :”Ethology and psychology in relation to the delivery of veterinary care.”  Purdue School of Veterinary Medicine – Animal Behavior Class taught by Dr. Jack Albright.  30 August, 1990.

Colloquium on: “Ethological and psychological principles in applying medical care in wolves.”  School of Veterinary Medicine.  University of Illinois.  Champaign, Illinois.  2 September, 1990.Colloquium: “Delivery of Health Care to Captive Wolves without Trauma.”  University of Illinois School of Veterinary Medicine.  Champaign, Illinois.  12 September, 1990.

Lecture I: “Ethological and psychological principles of behavior.”  Lecture II: “Application of behavioral principles in delivering health care to wolves and other wild animals in captivity.”  School of Veterinary Medicine.  University of Pennsylvania.  Philadelphia, PA.  25 September, 1990.

Lecture on “Howling and Scent Communication in Wolves. Dr. Kathy Rowan.  Communications 453.  At Wolf Park.  28 September, 1990.


Lectures and Demonstrations

“Handling Wolves in Captivity”.  Lecture and demonstration Erich Klinghammer and Pat Goodmann.  Department of Animal Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  Held at Wolf Park March 5, 1991.

“Handling Wolves in Captivity”, Pre-Vet Symposium, Erich Klinghammer and Pat Goodmann, lecture and demonstration at Wolf Park.  March 7, 1991.

“Basic Concepts of Ethology and Psychology” and “Providing Medical Care to Wolves in Captivity – Behavioral Aspects”.  Two lectures at School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia, Pa., September 24, 1991


Imprinting and Early Experience Published

Klinghammer, E. (1992).  “Imprinting and Early Experience: How to avoid problems with tame animals” in WILDLIFE REHABILITATION, Vol.9, Ludwig, Daniel R., Editor.

Lecture: “Animal Behavior for Veterinarians”, School of Veterinary Medicine, Purdue University, April 21, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer

Lecture: “Dealing with the Aggressive Dog”, Presentation at the Third Annual Symposium for Humane Society and Animal Control Personnel – Societal Issues in Animal Management, Purdue University’s School of Veterinary Medicine, May 17, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer

Lecture: “What Zoos Teach Us About Adaptation in Humans and Animals”, The University of Chicago Interdisciplinary Conference on Human/Animal Interaction, Ida Noyes Hall, University of Chicago, May 29, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer

Lecture: WOLF-DOG SEMINAR, sponsored by the Wolf Society of Great Britain, Surrey University, Surrey, U.K., July 11-12, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer

Lecture: “Wolf Behavior and Ecology in North America”, sponsored by German Society for the Protection of the Wolf, Bad-Munster-Eifel/Cologne, Germany, July 14, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer

Lecture: WOLF-DOG SEMINAR, sponsored by Klondike Sled Dog Club, Stafa/Zurich, Switzerland.  July 18-19, 1992. Dr. Klinghammer


Main Pack Enclosure and Colloquium

The long awaited Turtle Lake Enclosure was finished. At just about 7 acres, it is the second largest wolf enclosure in the United States.

Colloquium: “Wolf and Bison Research at Wolf Park.” presented at the Max Planck Institute of Human Ethology.  Andechs.  Germany.  16. Jun. 1993.


A Holding Pen and Tornado


The holding pen to the Main enclosure is constructed.


April 27, 1994 – A tornado blows through the Park. We were very lucky. The twister hit the Park just after midnight. It destroyed Wolf Woods East. Ursa was the only one living there at the time. She was not harmed and did not leave the area.

Joe Wolf’s hut was picked up, as he stood in the door, and smashed a few feet from him. He was uninjured. We lost some trees, the old ticket booth, and some of the trailers were relocated.



Wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone Park. Wolf Restoration Project Leader, Doug Smith was a former intern and “puppy mother” at Wolf Park.


Rare Disease
We lost six bison to Catarrhal Fever, a disease so rare most vets never see it. Unfortunately, it is passed on by sheep and our little flock all had to be euthanized.


Gifts for All


The New Gift Shop was installed and the new bleachers arrived. (Images of erector sets dance through everyone’s mind – Some assembly required.)


Bridging the Gap


The bridge arrives. Where else would you find a second hand bridge fitting in so well? The bridge completes a loop around the wolf enclosures.


Hungary Presentation

Monty Sloan goes to Budapest Hungary and presents Captive Wolf Puppy Raising Protocols.


First Walk For Wolves Fundraiser
An incredible success, pioneered by Denise Pearson. The Walk For Wolves fundraiser brought together local businesses and residents in a celebration of wolves and wolf conservation.


The Park has its first litter of wolf pups in several years: Dharma, Tilly, and Gordon.


October 6: Park founder Dr. Erich Klinghammer passes away at the age of 81.
Gladys Wright Education Center opens on December 1.


Dharma and Wolfgang have a litter of pups: Fiona, Bicho, and Kanti remain at Wolf Park.


Wolf Park receives its first gray foxes: Gypsum, Hunter, and Ifa.

New website design introduced.