It made for a bizarre sequence of photographs taken in 2007 – the very subject of which seemed to go against nature. The predator is pictured looking abject while his fellow prisoner looks almost protective. Yes, the wolf has been starving in his tiny enclosure for months, and when his captor pushed the old donkey in with him, the canine acted the only way he knew how.
Although the village of Patok in Albania lies just 25 miles north west of the country’s capital, Tirana, it is a wild and remote place. It sits within the county of Lezhë, which is known for its spectacular beaches and mountains. And the area’s rugged landscape plays host to a wide range of wildlife.
Among the animals that roam the hills outside Patok are wild boar, jackals, foxes, bears and wolves. In the recent past, though, lax hunting laws have meant that the numbers of many of Albania’s native species have diminished. But since authorities introduced stricter hunting laws at the turn of the century, wolf totals are on the increase.