Nothing is known about the life of any of the Wolves before the zombie apocalypse.
Some time after the outbreak, these survivors started to scavenge around the Washington, D.C. area, killing and luring other survivors into traps, taking all of their supplies and using them as bait after they turn. They always carve the letter "W" into their victims' foreheads, often dismembering them as well, and habitually mark locations they've raided with the ominous graffiti WOLVES NOT FAR. They also write a "W" on their own heads; some of them simply draw the letter with blood, mud or ink, while others appear to go further and carve their own flesh with it.
Sometime between Noah's arrival and departure from Grady Memorial Hospital, the Wolves attacked Shirewilt Estates, killing many of the inhabitants, torching several of the homes and knocking down one of the perimeter walls. They mutilated several of them to add to their collection of walkers for their numerous traps, as evidenced by the pile of severed limbs and torsos just outside the fences, and the reanimated heads with W's carved into them that were piled into a van.
A few weeks later, as Morgan Jones camped near the Alexandria Safe-Zone on his way to Washington, D.C., one of the Wolves approached him, holding him at gunpoint. After a brief and tense conversation, he threatened to rob and kill Morgan. When Morgan resisted, another Wolf attacked him from the woods. They persisted in trying to subdue Morgan and kill him with their knives, but were defeated with ease. After winning the fight, Morgan locked them up inside the car he had been sleeping in and honked the horn to ensure the area was safe before he left - and to lure any nearby walkers to serve as distraction should the Wolves awake.
Sometime after escaping, they captured and killed the man in a red poncho that Daryl Dixon and Aaron, two recruiters for the Alexandria Safe-Zone, were tracking earlier, leaving him to turn. At this location, they discovered that their trap had been sprung by Aaron and Daryl, and set about resetting it, luring the walkers back into the trucks with loud music and flashing lights. Meanwhile, the Wolf that had threatened Morgan by the campfire discovered Aaron's bag and photos of Alexandria, including one of Rick Grimes and his son Carl.
Shortly after Morgan Jones's arrival in Alexandria, Daryl tells Rick about what he and Aaron found at the Del Arno Foods truck lot, saying that Morgan came across two men with the letter "W" on their heads. Rick confirms that Morgan had mentioned the incident, and said that he was worried about the safe-zone's security. Rick mentions that the scouting missions for other survivors should stop, to which Daryl objects.
A few days later, while Rick and his group are away, trying to lead a massive herd of Walkers away, at least two dozen Wolves attack Alexandria with handheld weapons and Molotov cocktails. They kill the guards, scale the walls and slaughter numerous residents in their homes and the streets. They begin the same process of butchering and looting that they had done at Shirewilt Estates, dismembering their victims, and raiding the houses to steal valuable supplies.
As the Alexandrians fight back, a Wolf attempts to drive a large truck through the safe-zone's gates, but the driver is killed by Spencer Monroe before this can occur. Instead, the truck crashes into the bell tower of the church outside the walls and into a section of the wall, and the blaring horn begins to attract a massive herd of walkers in the vicinity. Carol Peletier is able to disguise herself as a member of the Wolves she killed earlier called Aphid, and proceeds to single-handily kill at least six of them. One is gunned down and killed by Carl, saving Ron Anderson. Another is killed by Rosita Espinosa after he fatally injured Holly, and two more are killed by Rosita and Aaron after looting some of the houses. Morgan is confronted by the blonde wolf he previously encountered outside Alexandria. He and four others surround Morgan, but are fended off. Morgan tells the Wolf that he and his companions will die if they continue to choose their savage way of life. He rebuffs Morgan, claiming that they "didn't choose", before turning and leaving along with the other surviving Wolves. The Alpha Wolf (the one who initially attempted to kill Morgan in the woods earlier and the assumed leader of the group), is left behind, and hides in one of the houses. Morgan finds him, and after a small struggle, the Wolf is knocked unconscious by him.
Following the attack on Alexandria which was successfully repelled, only six Wolves are known to have survived, the five who were fenced by Morgan, and escaped, and their assumed leader, Owen, is kept as a hostage by Morgan.
After fleeing from Alexandria, the blonde wolf and the the other wolf attack Rick while he is stopped on the roadside in an RV. After a brief struggle, Rick manages to kill them both. Rick notices in the RV's front mirror that the other three Wolves who fled the safe-zone are quietly approaching the RV and, in a fit of fear, he unloads an entire magazine through the RV's wall, killing the three of them.
Following this, Owen was the only remaining member of the group confirmed to be alive. He was for a time being held prisoner at Alexandria. Wounded with a deep cut in his torso, he vowed to Morgan that he will kill him and everyone else there if he doesn't die from his injury.
When a massive herd of Walkers invades Alexandria and Carol and Morgan fight over the life of the Owen, he is able to knock out Morgan while he is distracted and escapes from his cell, taking Denise as a hostage.
Owen later protects Denise even though it results in him being bitten, causing Denise to suggest he's changed. He's later shot by Carol and devoured by the Walkers and becomes one himself. During the battle, Morgan spots Owen and kills him with his staff, putting an end to the Wolves.
- Owen (Leader)
- Blond Wolf (Second-in-Command)
- Red Jacket Wolf
- Satchel Wolf
- Shaved Head Wolf
- Black Bearded Wolf
- Numerous unnamed Wolves
- Red Poncho Man
- Shelly Neudermeyer
- Natalie Miller
- Noah's mother and brother
- Noah's younger brother
- Numerous Shirewilt Estates survivors
- Numerous Alexandria Safe-Zone survivors
- Numerous amounts of zombies and unnamed people
- The Wolves mark some of the places they have attacked or claimed with a WOLVES NOT FAR graffiti.
- The Wolves are inspired by the belief that human beings descended from wolves, and that the advent of the zombies signals a return to their natural state.
- It appears that the Wolves are an altered version of the Scavengers from the comic series—a trait they share with both the Claimers and Terminus (who are altered versions of the Marauders and the Hunters respectively).
- However there is another altered version of the Scavengers, who share the same name as their comic counterpart, though it has been confirmed they are not related to the comic group.
- Their introduction had been foreshadowed several times throughout the second half of Season 5:
- At the beginning of "What Happened and What's Going on", the writing "WOLVES NOT FAR" is noticed by Michonne on a barn as they pass in a car. The same message can later be seen in Shirewilt Estates. There is also a truck parked in the woods outside packed full of dismembered, reanimated torsos, each of which sports the "W" carving on their head.
- In "Remember", Carl finds a comic book with a "Wolf Fight" ad on the back.
- In "Forget", Daryl finds the first of many walkers with a "W" carved on their heads.
- In "Try", Daryl and Aaron come across a group that was recently attacked by the Wolves and find a zombified woman tied to a tree with her entrails hanging out and the "W" carving on her forehead. Sasha also shoots down a walker with the "W" carving outside the walls of Alexandria.
- In an interview, Greg Nicotero states that the Wolves' true motives are to build up a zombie army, using the victims they have killed.
- It also seems, according to one Wolf, that another motive of the Wolves is to "free" survivors living in communities, such as Shirewilt Estates and Alexandria, as they do not believe that people belong in such places during an apocalypse. This idea is again reestablished by Owen, as a method of justifying their actions of killing survivors and taking what they want.
- Nevertheless, it is unclear what their specific plans for individuals are. In "JSS", many Wolves are seen mercilessly killing survivors with no preamble, while others are seen chaining up survivors and pulling them along like slaves. When Carol, disguised as a Wolf, leads along a chained-up Morgan to keep him safe, one Wolf commends her on her find. It is possible they tend to kill immediately those who appear to be less physically able, such as Erin and Shelly Neudermeyer, while they capture stronger-appearing ones, like Morgan, for them to do their bidding. Alternatively, they may intend to kill these captives later on, as there were walkers with W's chained up in the trucks that Daryl and Aaron found.
- Their true motives remain unknown, and they simply seem to like destroying and slaughtering innocent people, and steal from walled communities.