April 3, 2006 – June 4, 2018
Twister and his sister, Willow, were brought to Wolf Park from a facility in Utah which studies non-lethal forms of predator control. Twister was named after the natural disasters threatening the park on the day of his arrival.
The coyotes grew up much faster than the wolves and exhausted their puppy parents by scaling walls and searching for new activities with which to amuse themselves. They were glad to move from the puppy nursery to the adult pen which had been specially reinforced to contain young coyotes.
Twister developed phobias of many things as he grew older. He didn’t like things with wheels, construction equipment or anything new and unusual. The staff tried to help him get over some of his fears.
One of the coyotes’ favorite weeks of the year was when dog trainer Ken McCort came to visit. He would always spend a long time working on target training the coyotes. They also appreciated the environmental enrichment efforts of the interns. The interns would provide them with boxes filled with strange foods, things to destroy, or unusual scents.
During evening rounds on June 4th, Twister was found to have passed away without warning. He’d been fine during morning and afternoon check. The most likely causes of death were seizure, stroke, or heart attack, but the vet found nothing conclusive. Twister will be sorely missed by those who learned so much about coyotes and their incredibly unique behavior during his time at the park.