Portrait of a young female European grey

The Wolves and Humans Foundation is part of the success story of wolves in Europe in the twenty-first century

Formed in 1985 as the Wolf Society of Great Britain, Wolves and Humans is one of the oldest wolf advocacy organisations in Europe. When the Wolf Society started, wolves were still widely persecuted, and were absent or critically endangered across much of their historic range; recovery was still a long way off - reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone would not happen for another ten years!  The major challenge for conservation groups was to save the wolf from extinction.

Much has changed since then. Aided by increased environmental awareness, international legislation and conventions, and the work of many dedicated biologists, conservationists, and volunteers, wolves were rescued from the brink and populations are recovering worldwide. The Wolf Society played its part in that success, working with conservation projects in Portugal, India, Poland, Slovakia, Russia, Alaska and Romania, and campaigning and raising awareness on many issues where the recovery of wolves was threatened.

The seeds of Wolves and Humans were sown in 2003 at the World Wolf Congress in Banff, Canada. A  theme of many of the presentations was a celebration of the success of wolf recovery around the world, but also recognition that learning how to live with new and expanding wolf populations would be the main conservation challenge in the twenty-first century.

In response to these new challenges, and to reflect the fact that wildlife conservation is as much about people as animals, the Wolf Society of Great Britain was renamed Wolves and Humans in 2005. It was decided to focus the work of the new charity in Europe, and also to include brown bears and lynx, as they occupy much of the same range as wolves, and face many of the same threats to their survival.