Friday, February 16, 2018

Wolf Conservation Center Standing Up for Critically Endangered Lobos

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service finalized its deeply flawed recovery plan for the critically endangered Mexican gray wolf last month that will prevent the species from recovering in its historic homelands. Former federal officials say it strays far from scientists’ minimum recommendations for recovery.

So, we're taking USFWS to court.

On January 30, Earthjustice, on behalf of the Wolf Conservation Center, Dave Parsons (Mexican Wolf Recovery Coordinator for the USFWS), the Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife, and the Endangered Wolf Center filed a lawsuit challenging the federal government’s fatally flawed plan.

We're standing up for critically endangered lobos like F1435 (aka Magdalena) in the hope that one day, her species will be fully restored to their rightful place on the wild landscape.


Tuesday, February 13, 2018

A Wolf Encounter in the High Arctic

A wild encounter with a young arctic wolf at at -40°C.

Arctic wolves don't often see people, so this youngster was noticeably curious when she encountered renowned filmmaker Oliver Goetzl.

Arctic wolves can be especially curious around people, much more so than their wild counterparts in other parts of the world. Anecdotal evidence suggests that arctic wolves show less fear of people because they rarely see humans and have not been subject to the intense persecution like other wolves in North America. From passing down knowledge from one generation to the next, most wolves (beyond those in the arctic) have learned that people pose a threat to survival.

Photo ©Doclights/Gulo Film Productions

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Pay a State Fee to Enter a National Park? Leave it to Wyoming...

Even though Yellowstone belongs to all Americans as part of our National Park System, Wyoming is proposing that all visitors to America's first National Park be required to pay an extra fee to support the state's Game and Fish Department.

Wyoming is a state with a history of hostile and extreme anti-wolf policies. The state manages a trophy hunting season in its northwest corner. In the remaining 85% of Wyoming (a.k.a. the "predator zone"), wolves can be killed by any means, at any time, without a license.

National parks do not belong to one state - they are national properties in which every citizen has a vested interest. Moreover, each year, millions of Americans flock to Yellowstone in order to see the wolves, bison, bears etc... Should those Americans be forced to pay a fee to a state agency that seeks to destroy the very purpose of their visit? What say you?

If the fee is enacted, it will not be able to go into effect without federal action; the United States Congress would also have to act if the state fee were to be put in place.

Currently, there are no other national parks that have fees assessed that go to help state wildlife agencies. The Wyoming proposal is a first of its kind.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Earth Touch: Lobos in Limbo

Not long ago, the Mexican wolf came perilously close to extinction. Eleventh-hour conservation efforts nudged the iconic predator back from the brink – but only by a little. Decades later, its long-term survival is still uncertain, and a recently finalized recovery plan for the endangered subspecies has reignited long-standing debate.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Saving Endangered Wolves Via Artificial Insemination

While the Wolf Conservation Center has been a vocal and visible advocate in trying to secure protections for critically endangered wolf species, the WCC also pursues extraordinary conservation measures to maximize the genetic health of the wolves entrusted to our care.

The WCC employs reproductive tools including, semen collection and gamete cryopreservation to aid in maintaining diversity within a species that was at one time extinct in the wild.

Today, the WCC took a further step in reproductive research by artificially inseminating Mexican gray wolf F1226 (affectionately known as Belle) using sperm that was preserved by freezing. The nonsurgical transcervical insemination was performed at the WCC under the leadership of reproductive specialists Soon Hon Cheong of Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell’s Dr. Anna Mitchell DVM, Norwalk Veterinary Hospital’s Dr. Charlie Duffy, VMD, and Christine Wilson of Pound Ridge Veterinary Center.
We won’t know the outcome of the procedure until early April; the gestation period for a wolf is 63 days.

In the meantime, enormous thanks to our reproductive team, and most of all to Belle, for making a very personal and valuable contribution to the genetic health of her rare species!

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Super Bowl Gets Thrown to the Wolves

Beyond being the cutest QB ever, Atka is ecologically important as a critical keystone predator. GO WOLVES!

Wolf Hygiene 101

Beyond their importance as a critical keystone species, wolves can be pretty cute too!

Ambassador wolf Alawa is doing an adorable job of demonstrating a face wipe. She just completed eating her meal (the leg of a road-killed deer) so, by rubbing her head in the snow, she's cleaning her face of blood and debris. Plus, it looks like it feels really good too!

If you want to watch Zephyr, Alawa, Nikai, Atka or the WCC's critically endangered Mexican gray wolves or red wolves in live time, visit our live wolf webcams. If you see something cool, let us know!