Passionate dog lover Graham Norton travels to Ethiopia to investigate a
project which is helping man's best friend live alongside its rare wild cousin –
the Ethiopian wolf – as he kicks off the second week of the Saving Planet Earth
Rarer than the giant panda, the wolf faces a constant threat of disease from
Graham travels to the roof of Africa to meet Argentine biologist and wolf expert
Claudio Sillero, whose Ethiopian team works with local people to vaccinate their
"Everyone's sharing the same habitat – the people, the dogs, the wolves – and
they've got to get on or they're all doomed," says Graham.
Graham enjoys a close encounter with a wolf pack as it patrols across the
mountain plateau, and witnesses one of the rarest wildlife events as cubs emerge
from their den. "I've just loved it up here," he says. "It's been absolutely
amazing. It's not just about the wolves, it is about this place. And if you save
the wolves, you save the place."
The loss of the wolf could have wider environmental effects, explains Claudio:
"Ethiopian wolves are the guardians of the Bale Mountains – the source of water
for a huge area of the Horn of Africa. If we lose these mountains, not only would
we lose many species of plants and animals but we'd also be affecting human lives
But threats are imminent. "There's a road coming, so there's going to be more
people. That's a real challenge to explain to those people why they shouldn't
farm the mountains. Hopefully, the programme can convince them that if the wolves
are up here, the mountains are healthy, the water is clean and, ultimately,
Ethiopia is better off," concludes Graham.
A £10 donation to the BBC Wildlife Fund could buy four rabies vaccines for the
Ethiopian Wolf Conservation Project.
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