“The ICNF is financing support for the acquisition of dogs, as is the case of the Trás-os-Montes, for the guarding of livestock”, the ICNF’s Northern regional director, Sandra Sarmento, told Lusa.

Shepherds in Planalto Mirandês, in the district of Bragança, are concerned due to the increasing number of wolf attacks in the vicinity of their localities, and since January there have been records of six incidents dealt with by nature watch teams from the Douro International Natural Park (PNDI), four of which were registered in the municipality of Mogadouro.

Contacted by Lusa, Sandra Sarmento explained that the Iberian wolf is a protected species, being a top predator, and that, according to the latest censuses, still to be published, there are 300 animals of this species, in the North region alone.

“The Iberian wolf is a top predator that has contributed to the balance of populations and the ICNF has an increased responsibility in its protection”.

Sandra Sarmento also added that the ICNF must guarantee a set of precautions to prevent wolves from approaching herds and villages, using dogs or electric fences.

On Monday, the ICNF assessed an alleged wolf attack on a flock in Vila de Ala, in Mogadouro, following the death of six sheep and three lambs, which the owner described as “an attack near the first houses at the entrance to the village”.

The owner of the herd attacked on Monday, Mário Mora, told Lusa that he believed that, "due to the bite" it was an attack by "a wolf or wolves" on his animals.

“The attack resulted in the death of a ram, six sheep, and some offspring that were a month or two old,” he said, adding that this was the first time his animals had been attacked.

Sandra Sarmento assured that, with the support of dogs, wolf attacks are largely repelled.

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