The Christian Science Monitor

France's wolves are back. Now, can it protect its farmers?

Marc and Ludivyne Baudrey tend to their flock of sheep on their farm in Fresse-sur-Moselle, France, as Ludivyne holds a days-old lamb. Source: Colette Davidson

An icy rain whips through Benoît Gille’s wild gray hair as he rounds up his herd of 400 sheep with his wife, Ghislaine. Mud clinging to their boots, the couple pour hay into several troughs in fields tucked among the rolling green hills of the Vosges region in eastern France.

It’s a picturesque, peaceful country scene – for now. But the threat of a wolf attack is always looming. Despite protective fencing and seven guard dogs, the Gilles have lost more than 60 sheep to wolf attacks in the last year, causing intense emotional and financial strain that has almost broken them.

“When it was really bad a few months ago, there was constant stress that we’d go to the herd and find wounded or dead animals,” says Mr. Gille. The sheep weren’t eating and the pregnant females were losing their lambs due to the stress of seeing other sheep attacked. One day, he says, he

Wolves are backThe wolf-farmer balance'We want to live with the wolves'

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Christian Science Monitor

The Christian Science Monitor3 min readSociety
Three Questions: Antonio Brown, The Latest NFL Morality Test
Amid sexual assault allegations, Antonio Brown is the latest moral test of the NFL’s commitment to address violence against women by its players.
The Christian Science Monitor7 min read
Less Bollywood, More Us: How India's Weddings Are Changing
Indian weddings are still sacrosanct. But more couples are changing up traditions, reflecting evolving views on money, gender, and happiness.
The Christian Science Monitor4 min read
‘Am I Next’ Protests: South Africans Push To Renew Fight Against Rape
Uyinene Mrwetyana’s rape and murder have reawakened outrage about violence against women in South Africa. But will it lead to change, protesters ask?