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'

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