An episode of a new CBC mini-series will watch over a group of wolf pups in Algonquin Park as they fight to survive.
Dugald Maudsley, executive director of Secret World of Sound, says the episode is one of three. The episode focuses on Algonquin Park with shots of Muskoka sprinkled in. It airs on Feb. 29 on CBC at 9.m. and will be available to stream on CBC Gem the day before.
The goal of the mini-series was to detail how animals live in their most natural state, which is why Maudsley says they focused entirely on sound.
“It allows us to look at all these animals and their behaviour in a totally different way because all of a sudden you realize they’re communicating with each other, they’re protecting themselves, they’re ensuring they can get their prey, whatever it is, and they’re using sound to do that,” he explains.
Maudsley says he learned about how wolf packs will often leave pups at rendezvous sites during the day. He explains the pups are too big to stay in the den but not quite ready to hunt.
They spend the day playing with each other and learning how to howl.
While cute for us to watch, Maudsley says this is a tumultuous time for pups and many don’t make it. As they’re learning to howl, they can attract predators.
“There is this whole kind of tension going on with these pups, many of whom don’t make it a year for this reason,” he continues. “Can they get past this very dangerous moment? Can they learn how to use their howl?”
Along with the wolves of Algonquin Park, Maudsley says they viewed 20 other animals across 11 countries. He explains it took between 20 to 30 days to find the subjects and get enough footage to tell their story.
While we, especially in Cottage Country, run into animals on a day-to-day basis, it may come in the form of a turtle crossing Hwy. 11 or a deer grazing in our backyard. Maudsley says it’s what we don’t get to see that inspired him to go on this journey. “It’s this realization that there’s all this stuff going on under the surface,” he says.
While the episode on Algonquin Park airs on Feb. 29, the series’ first episode is being shown on Feb. 15, followed by episode two on Feb. 22.