Julie of the Wolves

by Jean George

Start Free Trial

How did Julie obtain food for survival?

Quick answer:

Miyax's foraging efforts were successful because she was creative, patient and resourceful. She tried to meet her basic needs and she took advantage of opportunities when they presented themselves.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

In part 1 of Julie of the Wolves, Miyax gains access to food in three specific ways. Initially her hope is that she can befriend the wolf pack, be accepted as one of them, and reap the benefits of their hunting prowess.

Miyax stared hard at the regal black...

This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Get 48 Hours Free Access

wolf, hoping to catch his eye. She must somehow tell him that she was starving and ask him for food.

While Miyax is successful at becoming an accepted member of the pack, she is not successful in securing food for herself from the wolves. This is partly because she isn't completely accepted, and partly because the wolves are also meeting with very little success in hunting down fresh prey.

At this point, Miyax is starting to get desperate for food and calories of any kind. She decides that if grazing animals like caribou can survive on grass, moss, and lichens, then so can she. It tastes disgusting, and Miyax decides that perhaps cooking it into a stew of some kind might improve the taste.

She pulled blades of grass from their sheaths and ate . . . If the deer could survive in winter on this food, why not she? She munched, decided the plant might taste better if cooked, and went to the pond for water.

Her foraging continues because she and the wolves have not been successful at obtaining anything larger. Miyax diversifies her foraging to seeds and insect larvae.

The hedges around her pond were visible if she crawled, and so on hands and knees she rounded the bank, picking seeds, digging up the nut-like roots of the hedges, and snatching crane fly larvae from the water. As she crept she ate.

Miyax eventually begins making snares to capture small rabbits and birds. She is quite successful in this effort. In fact, she catches enough food to be busy skinning and cooking her catch for several days.

Eventually, the wolves are successful in taking down an entire caribou quite near where Miyax is. She is ecstatic, and she patiently waits for the wolves to have had their fill. Then she goes to what is left over of the caribou, cuts as much out as she can, smokes the meat, saves the pelt, and has enough food to last a long time.

Miyax could not believe her good fortune—an entire caribou felled practically at her door. This was enough food to last her for months, perhaps a year. She would smoke it to make it lighter to carry, pack it, and walk on to the coast.

Approved by eNotes Editorial