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The Big Bad Wolf is Misunderstood – So Why Do We Fear its Return to Britain?

posted Jun 30, 2019, 7:41 PM by chloe owens

5/9/2019, by Independent

The Big Bad Wolf is misunderstood – so why do we fear its return to Britain?

…In fairy tales the wolf is depicted as an undomesticated brute. We read about them swallowing grandmothers and blowing down houses owned by innocent little pigs…The Big Bad Wolf was once the most wide-ranging mammal on the planet – except for humans – and since becoming a protected species they have quickly recolonised their ancient hunting grounds. In Europe numbers have quadrupled since 1969. From deserts to forests to moorland, wolves can live almost anywhere and increasingly there are controversial calls to reintroduce this apex predator back in the UK…It turns out wolves are terrified of humans. This means that even in Abruzzo sightings are quite rare. Contrary to what we’re told in childhood tales, wolves rarely attack people. In Europe no one is believed to have been killed by a wolf in the past 20 years – despite their surprising proximity to human populations. They are less dangerous than collapsing deckchairs. However, human fear of wolves is deeply engrained.