We’ve known for a while that Chernobyl, after its nuclear power plant went into meltdown, became a surprising safe haven for wildlife. Devoid of humans, some animals have thrived. Now we’ve seen new evidence for this in the form of wolves that live in the area. A paper published in the European Journal of Wildlife Research has found that at least one is now venturing out of the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. That zone was set up after the nuclear accident in 1986, spanning about 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) across. No humans are allowed to live there, although tourists have since been allowed to visit. In the paper, Michael Byrne from the University of Missouri at Columbia and his colleagues tracked 14 gray wolves with GPS collars in the section of the zone that’s in Belarus. While 13 of them, all adults, remained in the zone, the other – a male juvenile – roamed about 300 kilometers (186 miles) outside the zone over 21 days.
IFL Science 2nd July 2018 read more »