Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Blowing Apart Your Gender Norms, Wolf Style

Hey guess what.

Image of a wolf pack with text above it.
[Image text: Contrary to popular thinking, wolves are not dominated by an "Alpha Wolf" that is the most aggressive male, or male-female pairing, of the pack. Rather, they have found that wolf packs are similar to human families, and there is little aggression or fights for "dominance."]

Yet another case of people assuming that everything has always followed modern, Western gender roles, even in the animal kingdom. Turns out, there's no such thing as alpha males when it comes to wolves, at least in their standard environment. Dominating behavior was only observed when wolves were captured and thrown into a space with a bunch of unrelated wolves, creating confusion and unusual wolf behavior.


So if you’re an ‘alpha wolf’ then you are, in point of fact, not the noble, fierce and imposing leader of a group who respects you, but a scared wild creature with no social support frantically lashing out at strangers to try and gain some semblance of control over a fundamentally uncontrollable environment? 
Huh. 
That would explain a few things.

Haha. Ha. Ha.

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