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Grey wolves usually keep away from humans because of the threat of being hunted. There are thought to be 10,000 living in Xinjiang


* Two seriously injured in attack by wolves driven mad by hunger

* One victim has ear torn clean off, while others suffer scratches to face

* Starving beasts attacked humans after drought killed off their usual prey


These shocking images show the horrifying injuries suffered by villagers in China when a pack of starving wolves attacked.

Up to five of the animals surrounded the small farming community before viciously mauling the six people living there, leaving two seriously injured in a previously unheard of attack.

One of the victims had their ear torn off by the wolves, who had been driven mad by hunger, while others suffered bites and scratches to the face, neck and chest.

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Six Chinese villagers were injured when wolves driven mad with hunger attacked

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One of the victims had their ear torn off by the starving pack of wolves in Xinjiang province

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Two of small farming community were injured seriously after they were viciously mauled

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The villagers suffered bites and scratches to the face, neck and chest, requiring stitches
After the six people fled the midnight attack in north-western China's Xinjiang region, the wolves killed several farm animals.

The victims were taken to hospital in the nearby city of Urumqi where most required stitches on their hands and face.

It was previously unheard of for humans to be attacked by packs wolves, as they usually steer clear of contact with people.
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The victims were taken to a hospital in the nearby city of Urumqi for urgent treatment
However, the animals were driven mad by hunger caused by the worst drought in decades in the region, with average rainfall down by a third, affecting nearly a million hectares of crops.

Many of the animals that the wolves might have otherwise fed on have died from lack of food, leading them to turn on the men and women in the village.

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A drought in north-western China killed off most of the wolves' prey, causing the attack
Hundreds of thousands of farm animals have also been left without water and the economic damage is estimated to be in the hundreds of millions of pounds.

The drought has brought near-disaster to the Ili River valley that has seen no rainfall in what is the worst drought in 60 years.

The wolf population of China is rapidly decreasing, but there are still approximately 10,000 grey wolves in Xinjiang province, where the attack happened.

Lone wolves have attacked individuals in China before, but an attack on this scale is extremely rare.