a black and white female wolf

Considering the organized rankings present in packs, it’s no surprise that wolves are the rampant theme for contemporary fantasy novels. Every member of a pack has a responsibility and is named accordingly.

In this article, I’ll be talking about the female members of the park, what they are called, their responsibilities in the park, and some popular myths.

What is a female wolf called?

A female wolf is either called a Luna wolf or a she-wolf depending on the position on the hierarchy ladder in the pack. A Luna wolf is a high-ranked female wolf, and in rare cases, is called an alpha female. Although, a luna-wolf seldom has the status of the alpha male. A she-wolf is known to be a female individual within the pack.

What is Luna Wolf?

A Luna wolf is a female wolf that is considered to be the most important female of the wolf pack. 

Together with the alpha male wolf, the Luna wolf sits at the top of the pack hierarchy with several responsibilities.

Responsibilities of a Luna wolf

The Luna wolf is the female version of the alpha male. She is everything except the leader of the pack but she is the highest-ranking female in the pack.

To control the population of the wolf pack, the Luna wolf is the soul mate of the alpha male; the pair are the only members of the pack that bears pups, and the Luna wolf nurtures them until they join the pack in hunting.

In addition, when the alpha male wanders off, she takes over the leadership responsibilities of the alpha wolf in his absence.

What is She-Wolf?

A she-wolf is a name that describes a female wolf individual of a wolf pack.

Unlike the Luna wolf, she-wolf does not mate with the highest-ranking male and does not have special privileges within the pack. However, as every other pack member, she-wolf has certain responsibilities.

Responsibilities of a She-wolf

Unlike the Luna wolf, a she-wolf is almost a non-existent member of the pack. The chances of her mating with the alpha wolf are very slim.

The she-wolf regularly participates in hunting and defending the territory against intruders.

Sometimes, she can take help in nurturing the pups when the alpha female is indisposed but other than that, she is a normal member of the wolf pack.

Although these three names – Luna wolf, alpha female, and she-wolf are being used interchangeably. The Luna wolf, or alpha female, and the she-wolf have very distinct roles and social statuses in the wolf pack.

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She-wolf mythology

The statue of romus, remus, and she-wolf

The she-wolf is held in high esteem in Roman mythology. A she-wolf was said to have nurtured the twins Romulus and Remus abandoned by the order of the king Amulius of Alba Longa.

Unlike the wolfish predatory nature, she took pity on the abandoned children. She’s considered to be the backbone in the founding of Rome.

She found them and took them into her care, in a den called, Lupercal, nurturing them with her milk until they were found by a shepherd, Faustulus. And for as long as Rome has been in existence, the picture of the She-wolf feeding the twins her milk has been the symbol of Rome.

Many historians have written different accounts of this myth, but all come to the conclusion that the twins were left by a flowing water source and were rescued by the wolf.

In Greek mythology, according to historians, Leto gave birth to her son Apollo in the form of a she-wolf to escape Hera.

Apart from Roman and Greek mythology, the she-wolf has been featured in numerous mythology and folktales worldwide as wolves were said to have lived on all continents of the world in ancient times.

The word she-wolf has been used in literal works and reality to describe women sometimes as a compliment and other times, not particularly. From a natural study of a pack of wolves in their habitat operating in a pack, the alpha female was observed to have a particular set of qualities.

The alpha female was very set in her position. She knew she wanted to be the she-wolf at the top of the pack ladder of leadership, so she went for it; opposed the present Alpha female, rendered her unfit for breeding and mating. Then she made herself available and ready to be the alpha male’s mate.

The alpha female had no choice but to give up the position for the contender. This is a rare occurrence in wolf packs, but however a perfect description of the female-alpha personality.

This personality can sometimes be seen as an amiable trait and other times as inappropriate; inappropriate in the sense that at times women with these traits thirst for power and use unruly tactics to climb to the top at all cost, and appropriate in that they are go-getters – they seek perfection in everything they do and embody responsibilities handed onto them.

Related: Do Wolves Eat FIsh?

Conclusion

Both Luna wolf and she-wolf are common names for female wolves. Yet, the difference between the two lies in their status within the wolf pack. The Luna wolf is the alpha female, while the she-wolf is the regular female pack member.

Further Reading:

https://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/wolf-pack-mentality.htm

https://www.livingwithwolves.org/portfolio/the-alpha-male/

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