Image credit to Gerald D. Tang 

Fun Facts!

Did You Know?

Chrysocyon brachyurus has established many nicknames some of which include: maned wolf, red wolf, red fox on stilts,  stilt legged fox, and skunk wolf (

Common names of the maned wolf in other languages:
"French: loupà crinière
German: mähnenwolf
Portuguese: lobo guará, guará
Spanish: aguará guazú (Argentina), lobo de crin, borochi (Bolivia)" (

The organisms first scientific name was Canis jubatus (

The first person to describe the maned wolf was D’Azara, a traveler of South America. He gave the maned wolf its common name aguara guazu, meaning maned wolf in Spanish (

In the nineteenth century, the maned wolf's name was changed from Canis jubatus to Chrysocyon brachyurus (  I could not find the reason why this change was made.      

Maned wolves can erect their black mane when they are in danger, making them look bigger to intimidate other animals (         

The maned wolf’s urine has a unique strong smell similar to the smell of a skunk, giving the animal a smelly reputation and the nickname, "skunk wolf" ( Typically, visitors at the zoo can smell the urine before they can even spot the captive maned wolf ( 

Maned wolves have three main vocalizations – a deep throated single “bark,” a growl, and a high pitched whine. The deep throated single bark is used for long range communication, and the growl is used as a short distance aggressive sound. Being nocturnal and living in tall grasses, it is difficult for them to see and sense other maned wolves. They have adapted these vocalizations and distinct scent markings with urine to help them create and uphold their territory (           

Not a single maned wolf has ever been domesticated(

This animal is South America's biggest wild Canidae (

The organism exhibits a solitary lifestyle.                 

The maned wolves can rotate their large, perky ears to listen. This gives an advantages for listening for prey in the grass. Once heard by these rotating ears, they pounce to catch it and then hit the ground with their front foot to kill it (

The maned wolf uses its teeth for digging (

Its entire life the animal has only one sex partner (

When the maned wolf "whines" at night in Brazil, it is believed to forecast changes in the weather (

The pups have black fur and are born in a litter size of 2 to 6 pups (Dietz 1985)                        

The animal is very shy and  flees when alarmed (      Image credit to Rogerio Cunha     

The maned wolf is believed to have supernatural powers:
* The right eye is supposed to bring luck in gambling.
* If children wear a necklace having a maned wolf tooth, they will not have dental problems in the future (

The animal’s fur is used by the native South American inhabitants for making good luck charms as well as in religious ceremonies (

The maned wolf loves to consume bananas and sugar cane ( 

If you want to read on about how this organism is spooky, go to Spooky Organism

Back to HOME