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Why Do Wolves Howl at the Moon? (Cover- Ishita Baghel)

Every good horror story or movie plot has a chilling sound at the beginning of the scene. Whether it's a hiss or snarl, these sounds prove to be a great and thrilling sound to our senses! One of the most classic and cliches of a Hollywood horror story is the main character hearing a loud howl in the middle of the night. Wolves. He or she then gets a feeling of fear and then questions their life choices. Why, oh why would you go into the woods by yourself in the middle of the night? Science may not be able to back up that question, but it certainly can back up why wolves howl at the moon anyway.

Wolves have been known to be howlers of the night. But why? That chilling sound released may be a part of something more.

Firstly, wolves howling AT the moon is nothing more than a myth. Our furry friends don't really care about the moon at all. Wolves mainly use howling as a source of communication between each other. But why do they look up at the moon? Well, the angle that they look at helps the sound of their howl travel faster. If there's danger nearby, food, a mate, or to find one another, howling always helps! However, I'm sorry to say that it doesn't really work for humans. If you want food, you'll have to go to your nearest fast- food restaurant.

Howling basically helps our wolves do a series of things. By releasing that loud noise, wolves can tell their pack where they are. This is especially handy if a wolf gets lost. Instead of a special dance like some animals perform, wolves mate using the sound of howls. Their howl attracts a potential partner or mate. Howling also marks the wolf's territory and warns other packs not to come near.

But then, why do wolves howl at night? They just howl at night because they are nocturnal, meaning that they are most active at night. As you may know, wolves don't only howl. Remember, they are like bigger, scarier puppies. Sure, they could kill you, but they're like puppies! Our dear dog friends have evolved from wolves. So, it's only natural that the wolves can whimper, whine, and growl.

So, the next time you read Little Red Riding Hood, think about how wolves can get dinner merely by screaming their guts out. I tried it too. Let's say it didn't go well...

Sending you curiosity and wonder,

- A.C.


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