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Andean Wolf

The Andean Wolf, or Hagenbeck’s Wolf (Dasycyon hagenbecki) is a mysterious canid from the Andes. In 1927 Lorenz Hagenbeck obtained a pelt from a dealer in Buenos Aires, and was told that it came from the Andes. Dr. Ingo Krumbiegel researched this skin in Germany in 1940, and said that it belonged to a new and still indescribable species from the high peaks of the Andes.

Upon learning in 1947 that when Hagenbeck had bought the pelt there had been three others just like it, Krumbiegel connected it with a skull he had discovered about ten years earlier that was 31 centimeters long and had belonged to an omnivorous canid. The size precluded it from belonging to a Maned wolf, since Maned wolf skulls are smaller (about 24 cm). He published a description of the animal and gave it its scientific name.

In 1960, scientists discovered that the fur had belonged to a domestic dog (possibly that of a shepherd), not to a wild dog from the Andes. A 2000 attempt at DNA analysis of the remaining pelt at Munich’s zoological museum proved unsatisfactory because it was contaminated with human, dog, wolf, and pig DNA. The pelt had also been chemically treated. The skull had allegedly been lost in 1945, during World War II, and could not be proven a hoax.

A free article in Wikipedia under the terms of GNU license. Retrieved: 27 May 2008.

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