Thursday, July 20, 2017

Mexican Gray Wolf Pups Featured on Scientific American



Thank you Scientific American for joining the first wolf pup checkup for the three critically endangered Mexican gray wolf pups born on May

Beyond being adorable, these pups represent the Wolf Conservation Center's active participation in an effort to save a species on the brink of extinction. The Mexican gray wolf or “lobo” is the most genetically distinct lineage of wolves in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the most endangered mammals in North America. By the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping, and poisoning caused the extinction of lobos in the wild, with only a handful remaining in captivity. In 1998 the wolves were reintroduced into the wild as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species 

Under Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan (SSP) protocols, captive born pups must be checked during certain milestones in their development. WCC staff checked in when the pups were about 10 days old to determine the size of the litter and take stock of the pups’ health, and again today at their two-month mark to record their heart rate and weight, and administer wormer and the first of a series of Distemper/Parvo vaccinations.

To learn more about the importance and plight of Mexican gray wolves here.

Congress Demands Genetic Tests to Delist Endangered Mexican Wolves

Biologists processing a wolf pup, including drawing blood for DNA analysis and affixing a tracking collar. (Photo: Arizona Game and Fish Department)

In an Effort to Strip the Critically Endangered Mexican Gray Wolf of Protections, Congress Now Wants Genetic Tests


Proposed spending plan for the U.S. Interior Department calls for a study to determine whether Mexican gray wolves are a genetically distinct subspecies despite multiple studies that have confirmed the lobo as a valid subspecies.

Extensive, independent DNA testing – including recent studies using a more accurate genetic analysis – shows conclusively that both captive and wild Mexican wolves are a pure wolf subspecies and substantially different from northern gray wolves, dogs and coyotes. Biologists from the Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team pull blood from every new wolf they collar or handle and submit it for DNA analysis to continually monitor the purity of wild Mexican wolves.

More...

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

From Wolf to Wiener Dog? When Did it All Begin?

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The long-debated question of where dogs first appeared has always been complex. Wolves are the ancestors of dogs, but for years researchers have been unable to agree on when the canines were first domesticated. In a new study, a palaeogeneticist finds your dog’s ancestor came from wolves 40,000 yrs ago.

In the paper, titled “Ancient European dog genomes reveal continuity since the Early Neolithic,” in the journal Nature Communications, Stony Brook University's Krishna R. Veeramah, PhD and colleagues write that the most plausible explanation was a single instance of domestication as far as 40,000 years ago, contrary to the results of a previous analysis in 2016 that suggested dogs were domesticated twice.

However, Veeramah did not make any claims as to where dogs split from wolves, he noted.

More from Stony Brook University's SBU Happenings.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Mexican Wolf Pups Get Clean Bill Of Health at First Vet Visit

On May 22, Mexican gray wolf F1226 (affectionately nicknamed Belle) made a priceless contribution to the recovery of her rare and at-risk species, she gave birth to three pups!

The Wolf Conservation Center is one of 55 facilities in the U.S. and Mexico participating in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan(SSP)– a bi-national initiative whose primary purpose is to support the reestablishment of Mexican wolves in the wild through captive breeding, public education, and research.

Under Mexican Wolf SSP protocols, captive born pups must be checked during certain milestones in their development. WCC staff checked in when the pups were about 10 days old to determine the size of the litter and take stock of the pups’ health. Today, near the pups’ two-month mark, WCC volunteer veterinarian Paul Maus, DVM from North Westchester Veterinary Office, joined Wolf Conservation Center staff and volunteers to record each pup’s heart rate and weight, and administer wormer and the first of a series of Distemper/Parvo vaccinations.

All three little girls are look robust and healthy weighing between 7-8 pounds.

In an effort to raise awareness for Mexican gray wolves and our active participation in endangered species recovery, we invited a global audience to join the wellness check in real-time via Facebook’s live streaming application. The video reached nearly two million viewers by end of day! Unbeknownst to the critically endangered kiddos, they're already making a big difference.


Background

The Mexican gray wolf or “lobo” is the most genetically distinct lineage of wolves in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the most endangered mammals in North America. By the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping, and poisoning caused the extinction of lobos in the wild, with only a handful remaining in captivity. In 1998 the wolves were reintroduced into the wild as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species Act.

Currently 13 Mexican wolves call the WCC home. In the U.S., there is a single wild population comprising only 113 individuals - an increase from the 97 counted at the end of 2015.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Closer Look Reveals States Don’t Support Recovery of the Mexican Gray Wolf

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For Immediate Release, July 16th 2017
Contacts: Maggie Howell, (914) 763-2373, maggie@nywolf.org
Dave Parsons, (505) 908-0468, ellobodave@comcast.net

Closer Look Reveals States Don’t Support Recovery of the Mexican Gray Wolf 
Despite Their Central Role in the Recovery Planning Process


Albuquerque, NM – On June 29th the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) released its draft recovery plan for the Mexican gray wolf. The critically endangered species is in the midst of a genetic crisis brought on by indiscriminate removals, a very small founder population, and the unwillingness of the Service to release enough wolves into the wild. The recovery plan has not been updated since 1982, a full sixteen years before Mexican gray wolves were first released. The newest recovery plan was created by collaborating exclusively with four southwestern states that have shown hostility towards the program, resulting in a plan that may doom the wolves. Representatives of these states have replaced the expert independent wolf biologists and related experts who were a central part of the last attempt at recovery planning which began in 2011. And all non-governmental stakeholders were cut out of the continued recovery planning process. The resulting draft plan hands total power over releases, wolf genetics, and the success of the program to the states.

Despite strong public support for wolf recovery in the southwestern states of Arizonaand New Mexico,where the wolves live now, and Utah and Colorado, where they will need to expand in the future, state game agencies have been actively sabotaging the wolves’ chances to recover. “They have been spending tax payer money on anti-wolf lobbyists,supporting increased killing of wolves,denying permits, and suing the federal government to stop needed wolf releases,” said Maggie Howell of the Wolf Conservation Center.

The law says recovery plans must be based on the best available science, but the states have instead told the Service what they will accept – too few wolves to ever be safe from extinction, and where they will accept them – mostly in Mexico, where neither the states nor the US government has any authority. “The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service scrapped a science-based, multi-stakeholder recovery planning process and willfully invited the states who have demonstrated their hostility to Mexican wolves to rewrite the recovery plan,” said Dave Parsons of Project Coyote. “The last time the Fish and Wildlife service allowed the states to manage Mexican wolf recovery, the population declined by 24% over a six year period.” The paper Four States’ Efforts to Derail Wolf Recovery was released to the public today. It details the various ways the four states have tried to block or frustrate recovery of the Mexican gray wolf.

Without immediate attention to releasing more wolves in more places, this rare little wolf of the southwest United States and northern Mexico will disappear forever. Unfortunately, the draft recovery plan completely turns over the control of releases in the U.S. to the states of Arizona and New Mexico. Given their previous unwillingness to release enough wolves in their states, and their blocking of all releases of adults, the future of our iconic southwestern lobos looks grim.

The Wolf Conservation Center is an environmental education organization committed to conserving wolf populations in North America through science-based education programming and participation in the federal Species Survival Plans for the critically endangered Mexican gray wolf and red wolf. Through wolves the WCC teaches the broader message of conservation, ecological balance, and personal responsibility for improved human stewardship of our World. For more information, visit www.nywolf.org.

Project Coyote is a national nonprofit organization and a North American coalition of wildlife educators, scientists, ranchers, and community leaders promoting coexistence between people and wildlife, and compassionate conservation through education, science, and advocacy. For more information, visit www.projectcoyote.org.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

For Wolves, Playtime Strengthens Family Bonds



This is what brotherhood looks like.

Not only do wolves use body language to convey the rules of the family (a.k.a. pack) and communicate intentions, they also use it to initiate fun! When seeking to play, wolves will dance and bow playfully. Playtime can also include a game of chase, jaw sparring, and varied vocalizations. For wolves, playtime isn’t only fun, it strengthens family bonds. Can you identify the dominant brother?

Friday, July 14, 2017

Letter Urges Release of Endangered Mexican Gray Wolves Into Wild

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Thirty-one conservation and wolf-protection organizations, including the Wolf Conservation Center, sent a letter today urging the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to expeditiously release endangered Mexican gray wolves to the wild.

Adding new wolves from captivity to the struggling wild population is vital to diversifying the gene pool of the 113 closely related wolves in the wild in Arizona and New Mexico, the letter noted.

“Inbreeding could push the Mexican wolf over the cliff toward extinction if the Fish and Wildlife Service doesn’t release captive wolves soon,” said Michael Robinson, a conservation advocate at the Center for Biological Diversity. “The trail forward for successful recovery gets steeper and narrower every day that wolf families are kept behind wire mesh, when they could be helping fix the genetic crisis in the wild.”

Two specific packs should be freed this month, according to recommendations from a federal and state interagency Mexican wolf team. The team advised that releases occur in June or July after elk calves are born “to facilitate natural hunting behavior.” Conservationists want to ensure those wolves are not sequestered indefinitely in pens, as wolf families have been in previous years after release plans were shelved. Today’s letter recommends specific animals and release locations in southern New Mexico.

The conservationists requested that other wolves also be released, including a single female from Mexico, christened “Sonora” by schoolchildren in a naming contest, who was captured after crossing the border into Arizona in March. Freeing her in the United States to breed with wolves here would follow guidelines in the new draft Mexican Wolf Recovery Plan that calls for “translocations” of wolves between U.S. and Mexico populations to enhance both populations’ genetics.

Read more via Center for Biological Diversity.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

The lobos are ready and the wild is calling!



These critically endangered Mexican gray wolves represent one of the two potential lobo families chosen for release into the Gila National Forest as per the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service 2017 Initial Release and Translocation Plan, p. 3.

Here's hoping we receive an update from USFWS re: when these lobos will receive the call of the wild.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Study Finds Red Wolves Have Lost 99% of Natural Range

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New research published today in Royal Society Open Science quantifies range contractions of 25 large carnivore species.

The analysis reveals that the carnivores that have experienced the greatest range contractions include the red wolf (greater than 99%), Ethiopian wolf (99%), tiger (95%) and lion (94%).

Large carnivores are among the world's most threatened species. They face a wide variety of anthropogenic threats including persecution by humans, particularly over livestock-related conflicts, hunting and trapping, and loss of prey base.

Although changes in species' ranges are ongoing, with newer threats like anthropogenic climate change, it is critical to continue to monitor large carnivore ranges to ensure the future of these species. The authors of the study hope their analysis serves as a starting point for this by providing an accurate measure of the historic and current status of the world's largest carnivores.

Read the study HERE.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

New Legislative Attack on America's Gray Wolves

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Today members of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment and Related Agencies released a new funding bill that includes riders which would:

1) Make wolves fair game for trophy hunting and trapping again in Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan. In addition to permanently removing federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) protections for gray wolves in the above mentioned states, the rider includes language that prohibits its judicial review, thus preventing any legal challenge.

2) Block funding for Endangered Species Act protections for ALL gray wolves in the lower 48 states - including the critically endangered Mexican gray wolf. Currently, there is a single wild population of this critically endangered gray wolf subspecies comprising only 113 individuals.

Beyond being anti-wolf, these toxic riders undermine the integrity of the Endangered Species Act - the world’s "gold standard” for conservation and protection of animals.

Stay tuned for updates.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Throw Amazon Prime Day to the WOLVES!



July 10 (9PM) - The next 30 hours will be one of the busiest times of the year on Amazon because it's Amazon Prime Day - an online-deals event that promises big discounts. If you plan on taking part, consider turning your shopping spree into a fundraiser for wolves! AmazonSmile, which lets you select a nonprofit organization, such as the Wolf Conservation Center Inc., to receive a percentage of your purchase price!


It's easy to sign up and use, try it HERE.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Last Chance to Speak Up to Save Our Monuments

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Tomorrow... 
That's the deadline to speak up and #SaveOurMonuments. With the end of this comment period, the Trump Administration is completing the first step of an unprecedented campaign to erode the fundamentals of America's public lands tradition. If you don't want to allow special interests like fossil fuel and mining companies call the shots on lands that are supposed to be protected for all of us, please take action now.

The Wilderness Society makes it easy for us to defend our public lands.

Submit your comment HERE.

Now or never.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Mexican Wolf Mom: Protector and Pillow

As a critical keystone species, Mexican gray wolves are essential. As a warm snuggly pillow, moms are essential too.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Doubling Down On Efforts to Kill Wolves, Idaho Considers Bait

WOLF_BAITING_LOGO_SMAlthough no other state allows the use of bait to hunt wolves for trophy, in its ongoing effort to kill wolves, Idaho is considering a new rule that would allow wolf baiting. Since protections were lifted for wolves in Idaho 2011, the state has made clear its intentions to "manage" wolves with a heavy hand. Not only does the Gem State sanction robust trophy wolf hunting/trapping seasons, it also established a state "Wolf Depredation Control Board" on which Idaho budgets $400,000 annually to exterminate wolves, often by aerial gunning, and even in wilderness areas.

TAKE ACTION


Idaho Fish and Game (IDFG) is giving the public a chance to weigh in by accepting comments on the proposed rule until July 26. Please consider taking a few seconds to fill out IDFG's survey to tell Idaho that under NO circumstances should baiting be allowed.

(Check "no" to question 1-3, and "yes" to question 4)

Complete the survey HERE.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Alaska's Largest Lethal Wolf Control Program To End

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BREAKING GOOD NEWS!

Alaska is scheduled to end it's largest lethal wolf control program! The Upper Yukon Tanana area program, which has targeted wolves in an area of the eastern interior since 2004, is scheduled to cease after the 2017-2018 season.

Since 2004, over 1000 wolves have been killed via aerial gunning under the program, costing tax payers millions of dollars and the National Park Service (NPS) several years of irreplaceable research. Yukon Charley Rivers National Preserve Superintendent Greg Dudgeon said some of the wolves lost were part of a long running NPS study, which was halted due to the state wolf kill.

“We did lose several years in what had been a 22-year-long for wolves with home ranges within Yukon Charley River’s natural preserve,” Dudgeon said. “We won’t get that back.”


The State’s long running Upper Yukon Tanana lethal wolf control effort has been aim aimed at increasing caribou numbers for hunters by reducing the number of wolves, but Alaska Department of Fish and Game regional supervisor Darren Bruning said research indicates wolves are not the limiting factor.

More via Alaska Public Media.

Take Action for Mexican Gray Wolves

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In November 2014, the Wolf Conservation Center was among 5 conservation groups who sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) for its failure to develop a valid recovery plan for the imperiled Mexican gray wolf, one of the most endangered mammals in North America.

As part of the court settlement reached last year, USFWS is required to complete a plan by Nov. 30, 2017 containing objective and measurable criteria for recovery as required by the Endangered Species Act. Last week the agency released its draft.

USFWS did not deliver.

In lieu of drafting a legitimate, science-based recovery blueprint that will ensure the survival of these iconic and imperiled wolves, USFWS yielded to political pressure to create a scheme that grants the very state agencies which have repeatedly attempted to obstruct recovery, ultimate authority on when, where, and how wolves are released into the wild.

Efforts to recover endangered species, including Mexican gray wolves, must be based on the best available science, not politics. More

Submit Comments/Attend a Public Meeting

The Fish and Wildlife Service’s plan is available for public comment until August 29.

There will be four public meetings this summer in New Mexico and Arizona:

  • July 18, 6-9 p.m. Northern Arizona University, Prochnow Auditorium, South Knowles Drive, Flagstaff, AZ
  • July 19, 6-9 p.m.. Hon-Dah Resort, Casino Banquet Hall, 777 AZ–260, Pinetop, AZ
  • July 20, 6-9 p.m. Ralph Edwards Auditorium, Civic Center, 400 West Fourth, Truth or Consequences, NM
  • July 22, 2-5 p.m. Crowne Plaza Albuquerque, 1901 University Boulevard NE,
  • Albuquerque, NM
To review and comment on the draft revised recovery plan and related documents, visit www.regulations.gov and enter the docket number FWS–R2–ES–2017–0036 in the search bar.

View the Draft Mexican Wolf Recovery Plan.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Independence Day


Sunday, July 2, 2017

Please Be Mindful of Wildlife on Independence Day

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Celebrating Independence Day is, and should be, a lot of fun. But please remember that those bright colors and thunderous explosions can have a real impact to wildlife. Please be mindful. Here are some tips for watching out for wildlife!

TIPS FOR WATCHING OUT FOR WILDLIFE from U.S. Fish and Wildlife. This post originally appeared in the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s Open Spaces blog

Celebrating Independence Day is, and should be, a lot of fun. Barbecues, beaches, parades and fireworks can be great ways to celebrate our country’s tremendous journey since the Continental Congress made that declaration July 4, 1776: “We hold these truths to be self-evident... “ But please remember that those bright colors and thunderous explosions can have a real impact to wildlife. Here are a few ways you can help mitigate the harm to wildlife and their habitats while you celebrate the Fourth of July.

Be alert: The shock of fireworks can cause wildlife and pets to flee, ending up in unexpected areas or roadways, flying into buildings and other obstacles, and even abandoning nests, leaving young vulnerable to predators. If you’re out driving, please be on the lookout for animals.

Help prevent fires: The threat to wildlife doesn’t stop at startling lights and sounds, fireworks also have the potential to start wildfires, directly affecting wildlife and destroying essential habitat.

Keep it clean: Litter from firecrackers, bottle rockets and other explosives can be choking hazards for wildlife and may even be toxic if ingested.

If you’re on the beach, watch out for nesting birds: Fireworks are very disruptive to piping plovers as well as many other nesting birds so be on the lookout for signs. We can work together to protect nesting shorebirds.

Cut back on using plastic or disposable utensils: During holiday celebrations we tend to break out the plastic utensils, plates and cups. Avoiding plasticware can easily reduce the amount of waste we create and inevitably help wildlife and their habitat, especially given the growing concern of plastic waste.

Properly dispose of fishing gear: Anglers can reduce the injuries or deaths to wildlife simply by properly discarding fishing line and hooks. Retrieve broken lines, lures and hooks and deposit them in trash containers or take them with you.

Follow laws and use caution: Federal law requires professional shows to be at least three-quarters of a mile from protected habitat. As you celebrate, choose fireworks shows that keep a respectable distance from wildlife habitat. If you plan to set off your own fireworks, make sure it is legal, use caution and you pick up any resulting debris. Stay away from wildlife habitat and avoid dry areas. Keep in mind that fireworks can’t be brought onto federal lands. Violations can come with stiff penalties, including fines costing thousands of dollars to jail time. Law enforcement officers are on the lookout for possession of illegal fireworks and use of fireworks in prohibited areas.

Alternatives to Fireworks:If you are looking to celebrate without using fireworks, there are a number of alternatives. Here are a few ideas, but we’d love to hear other ideas.


Laser light shows
Gathering around a firepit
Participate in a parade or block party
Bubbles (for kids afraid of loud noises)
Glowsticks
Noisemakers and more



Stay safe this Fourth of July and thanks for keeping wildlife in mind as you celebrate!

Friday, June 30, 2017

Western Governors' Association Seeks to Dismantle ESA

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With most of Washington focused on fights over presidential tweets, healthcare, and Russian meddling, lawmakers are taking controversial steps to weaken the Endangered Species Act.

The Western Governors’ Association endorsed a policy resolution this week that aims to dismantle the Endangered Species Act to benefit their core constituencies: agriculture and energy.

Association chairman Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead is leading the charge in portraying the important federal law as being bad for business and harmful to the economy.

While the Western Governors' Association, Congressional leaders, and lobbyists are speaking for major corporations and special interests, YOUR individual voice as a voting American counts just as much.

Please urge your Congressional representatives to preserve the spirit and integrity of this effective federal law and to oppose any legislation that takes aim at ESA and imperiled wildlife!

TAKE ACTION.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fed's ‘Recovery’ Plan Puts Politics Before Science

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Risks Recovery of Highly Endangered Mexican Gray Wolves

Tucson, Ariz. – Despite the recommendations of scientists, the draft recovery plan for the lobo or Mexican gray wolf (Canis lupus baileyi) released today by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service unnaturally limits the population size and range of this subspecies in the Southwest. Exclusion of millions of acres of suitable habitat near Grand Canyon, north of the current recovery area, and an artificial cap on population size will limit real recovery of this species to a state-managed token animal instead of allowing it to fulfill its important role in maintaining ecosystem health.

“The proposed downlisting and delisting criteria specified in the plan show that the Fish and Wildlife Service is anxious to get the management of these animals to state agencies, including the Arizona Game and Fish Department, which is overseen by a decidedly anti-wolf commission that has demonstrated strong hostility to recovery of Mexican wolves,” said Greta Anderson, Arizona Director for Western Watershed Project. “It’s less about recovery than it is an abdication of its own duties to ensure viable populations of wolves in the Southwest and to secure the future of this species.”

Instead of moving forward with a draft plan based on science-based recommendations, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has allowed the recovery planning process to be delayed and subverted due to political pressures from Arizona and the other three states important to Mexican wolf recovery. These pressures have focused on keeping wolves south of Interstate 40 and limited in population size to a number far below scientific recommendations.

“It is critical that some of the best habitat in Arizona for wolves – the Grand Canyon region – be part of this recovery effort,” said Emily Renn, Executive Director of Grand Canyon Wolf Recovery Project. “Capping the population and limiting the region for recovery so severely is not a recipe for a recovered Mexican wolf population.”

The population cap would compromise the scientific standards of the Endangered Species Act and leave recovery of a critically endangered species in the hands of the states. New Mexico has undermined meaningful recovery by blocking releases of wolves to the wild, and Arizona has recently moved to wield more control over the program, seemingly inspired by New Mexico’s actions. Last time Arizona ran the program, between 2003 and 2009, the wolf population in the wild actually declined.

“The agency claims that this plan will ensure resiliency, redundancy, and representation, but it is willing to go as low as 150 wolves in the U.S. for the purposes of downlisting – that is far from recovered and a dangerously low number,” said Sandy Bahr, Chapter Director for Sierra Club’s Grand Canyon Chapter. “Downlisting the species to ‘threatened’ will likely trigger even fewer protections for these animals.”

“The captive-breeding program that we operate aims to release wolves into their ancestral homes in the wild, but the success of our efforts requires a legitimate, science-based recovery blueprint that will ensure the survival of these iconic and imperiled wolves. This is not what the Fish and Wildlife Service delivered,” said Maggie Howell, Director of the Wolf Conservation Center.

Background

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service convened a recovery planning team in 2010 that included a Science and Planning Subgroup made up of some of the top wolf experts in the country. The Science and Planning Subgroup developed draft recommendations for recovery of the Mexican gray wolf based on the best available science, which included the following:
  • In addition to the current wild population of Mexican gray wolves in western New Mexico and eastern Arizona, two new core populations must be established in the Grand Canyon region in northern Arizona and southern Utah and in the Southern Rockies region in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado, areas containing the most suitable habitat for Mexican gray wolves.
  • Natural dispersal must be possible between the three core populations through habitat connectivity.
  • Each of the three populations must have a minimum of 200 wolves and, together, must have, at the very least, 750 wolves.
  • There must be a decrease in human caused mortality.
  • Genetic rescue of the wild population must be addressed.

An abundance of research demonstrates the important role that wolves can play in restoring health and balance to the ecosystems they inhabit. Wolf-related tourism brings an estimated $35 million in annual tourist revenue to the Greater Yellowstone region. Similar economic and ecological benefits are very likely in Arizona once wolves are fully restored to the landscape.

In a 2013 poll of registered voters, 87 percent of Arizonans agreed that “wolves are a vital part of America’s wilderness and natural heritage,” and 83 percent agreed that “the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service should make every effort to help wolves recover and prevent extinction.”

The goal of the Endangered Species Act is to prevent extinction and to bring species back to healthy population levels. This law – passed nearly unanimously, signed by a Republican president, and supported by the majority of Americans and Arizonans – has a proven record of preventing more than 99 percent of species extinctions. Federal authority to conserve and protect endangered and threatened species and their habitats is clearly established. Although cooperative programs exist among states and the federal government, state conservation programs must be at least as protective of a species as the Endangered Species Act. Efforts to recover endangered species, including Mexican gray wolves, must be based on the best available science, not politics.

There were only 113 Mexican gray wolves in the wild in Arizona and New Mexico at last official count, with just a small population now in Mexico. The widespread misinformation that led to the near complete extinction of these wolves is disproven by our current understanding of the important role wolves play in healthy functioning ecosystems – and by overwhelming public support for recovery of the world’s rarest gray wolf subspecies.

• Sierra Club – Grand Canyon Chapter • Western Watershed Project • Grand Canyon Wolf Recovery • Grand Canyon Wildlands • Wolf Conservation Center • Lobos of the Southwest • Southwest Environmental Center •

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Chronic Wasting Disease More Dangerous Than Originally Thought?

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Beyond wolves, perhaps no issue is as controversial in the hunting community right now as chronic wasting disease (CWD), a degenerative neurological illness that is similar to mad cow disease, among elk, deer and moose.

With a new study suggesting humans may now be susceptible to chronic wasting disease from deer, isn't it time for wildlife policy makers to better acknowledge that wolves make prey populations healthier?

The preponderance of scientific evidence supports the view that wolves generally kill prey that are vulnerable, such as weak, sick, old, or young animals. By killing sick prey individuals, wolves remove infectious agents from the environment, reducing transmission to other prey. The scientific community argues that in this manner, wolves help reduce the spread of CWD.


No doubt wolves serving as an unexpected ally in protecting the America's most popular big game animals could be a hard reality to swallow for some hunters and hunting groups who have long opposed the predators. But it might be now or never.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Are We Experiencing the Sixth Mass Extinction?

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Recent scientific analyses found that one in six species will be lost forever if world leaders fail to act on climate change - and human activity is causing extinctions of unprecedented scale. We have entered Earth’s sixth mass extinction event. Even using the most conservative estimates, the rate of extinction during the 20th century was up to 100 times faster than it would have been without human impacts.

More via the The New York Times.

The impacts of mass extinction on our own immediate future is alarmingly relevant. As the world’s diverse species vanish, so do countless crucial functions we depend upon: the ecosystem services that have enabled humans to have a good standard of living.


That is why Congressional threats to our Endangered Species Act are unacceptable.

Please consider signing and sharing the Wolf Conservation Center's campaign to save the Endangered Species Act. Take action.

Infographic by Eco Sapien

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Shh.... Sunday in Progress

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 Life as a one month old Mexican wolf pup is exhausting! Running. Jumping. Exploring. Wrestling.Wiggling. A little one on one time with Mom is the perfect remedy. Learn more about the significance of this critically endangered family here.

Friday, June 23, 2017

One Month old Mexican Wolf Pups Wrestle


For wolves, playtime isn’t only fun, it strengthens family bonds and reaffirms social status within the pack.

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Department of Justice’s McKittrick Policy Ruled Unlawful

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Late yesterday, a federal judge threw out the Department of Justice’s flawed ‘McKittrick Policy’ - a policy that prohibits prosecuting individuals who kill endangered wildlife unless it can be PROVED they knew they were targeting a protected animal.

The policy provides a loophole that has prevented criminal prosecution of dozens of individuals who killed grizzly bears, highly endangered California condors as well as DOZENS of critically endangered Mexican wolves.


The decision came as a result of a challenge brought by WildEarth Guardians and the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance - great job!!

More.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

We Are Grizzly Bears, Not Trophies




They are not trophies.

Last week, Wolf Conservation Center staff and supporters encountered this beautiful grizzly bear mother and cub in British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest.

Once roaming widely across North America, B.C. is one of the last refuges of the grizzly bear. However, the future for this mother and cub remains uncertain.

Although they're classified as a species of special concern, roughly 300 grizzly bears are shot for trophy in BC each year.

During the spring trophy hunt season, female bears like the one we watched are often shot leaving their cubs to perish. In the fall female grizzlies may be pregnant when they are hunted. Grizzly bears have the second lowest reproduction rate of North American land mammals.

Economically, B.C.’s grizzly bear trophy hunt threatens the growing and sustainable wildlife-based tourism industry. Eco-tourism and bear viewing attract thousands of people to B.C. every year and create sustainable employment.

There is simply no scientific, ethical or economic rationale for the trophy hunt. Yet this year, government officials EXTENDED the grizzly bear trophy hunting season in the Great Bear Rainforest.

Please help.

Sign Pacific Wild's petition today to ban the grizzly bear trophy hunt in B.C.

Sign here.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Red Wolf Peek-a-boo!

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Enter the secret lives of red wolves via the Wolf Conservation Center red wolf webcam!

Tune in!

The red wolf (Canis rufus) is the only wolf species found completely within the United States. Once common throughout the southeastern United States, red wolf populations were decimated by the 1960s due to intensive predator control programs and loss of habitat. In 1980, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) declared red wolves extinct in the wild after the last wild red wolves were gathered to survive in captivity, their wildness caged.

With the support of the Federal Red Wolf Species Survival Plan, a national initiative whose primary purpose is to support the reestablishment of red wolves in the wild through captive breeding, public education, and research, and under the aegis of the Endangered Species Act, red wolves were reintroduced in North Carolina in 1987. They were the first federally-listed species to be returned to their native habitat, and have served as models for other programs.

But today, USFWS, the very agency charged by federal law with protecting endangered species, is walking away from recovering the last wild red wolves to satisfy a few very vocal opponents. The current estimate puts the remaining wild population at their lowest level in decades. Fewer than 35 wild red wolves remain.

Learn what you can do here.

Monday, June 19, 2017

4 Week Old Mexican Wolf Pup Cuddles With Mom

This is what love looks like.

Beyond being adorable, this critically endangered wolf pup represents the Wolf Conservation Center’s active participation in an effort to save a species from extinction. The Mexican gray wolf or “lobo” is the most genetically distinct lineage of wolves in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the most endangered mammals in North America. By the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping, and poisoning caused the extinction of lobos in the wild, with only seven rescued and placed in captivity. Because the entire existing Mexican wolf population descended from just seven founders rescued from extinction, genetic health is the primary consideration governing most recovery efforts. In 1998 the wolves were reintroduced into the wild as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species Act.

The WCC is one of 55 facilities in the U.S. and Mexico participating in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan – a bi-national initiative whose primary purpose is to support the reestablishment of Mexican wolves in the wild through captive breeding, public education, and research.

Currently 13 Mexican wolves call the WCC home. In the U.S., there is a single wild population comprising only 113 individuals - an increase from the 97 counted at the end of 2015.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Happy Father's Day


Remarkable fathers can be found all over the world and one of them resides right here at the Wolf Conservation Center! Mexican gray wolf M1059 (a.k.a. Diego) wears the badge of fatherhood like a pro. He has exhibited admirable patience, affection, and protectiveness, exemplifying the amazing role that a father plays in the wolf world.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Sea Wolf Sings in the Great Bear Rainforest



During the Wolf Conservation Center's 2017 summer adventure in British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest, WCC staff and supporters were treated to a wild melody.

One of earth’s most stunning wildernesses on Canada’s Pacific coast, the Great Bear Rainforest is home to a myriad of healthy populations of species of plants, birds and animals, including subspecies and genetically unique populations of wildlife like the Spirit Bear and coastal gray wolf.

It's the kind of place that one can still watch grizzly bears, humpback whales, spirit bears, wolves and so much more all in a single day - while learning about the challenges that threaten its unique biological diversity.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Pupdate: Critically Endangered Mexican Wolf Pups Growing Bolder


The Wolf Conservation Center’s critically endangered Mexican gray wolf pups are almost 4 weeks old! This is a significant milestone for the adorable trio.

With their eyes wide open now, the kiddos are able to wander out of the den while staying near the den entrance and their menu has expanded to include small pieces of meat regurgitated by their parents and older siblings. The pups are growing rapidly so be sure to tune in to the WCC webcams to follow their progress!

Tune in now!

Protect grizzly bears - ban the trophy hunt in B.C.

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Three days ago, Wolf Conservation Center staff and supporters encountered this beautiful grizzly in British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest.

When bears emerge from their dens in the spring, food is in short supply with only the green grass available to eat at lower elevations. Because food is relatively scarce early in the season, bears tend not to put on weight until well into June. We came upon the grizzly in one of Great Bear's many estuaries, or “nurseries of the sea,” where the river meets the ocean. For hours we watched her quietly peruse a patchwork of sedge grass while periodically sizing us up with a glance to ascertain out intentions.

Once roaming widely across North America, B.C. is one of the last refuges of the grizzly bear. But the future of this grizzly remains uncertain.

Despite widespread opposition, the B.C. government continues to treat this vulnerable and iconic species as an expendable resource.

During the spring trophy hunt season, female bears like the one we watched are often shot leaving their cubs to perish. In the fall female grizzlies may be pregnant when they are hunted. Grizzly bears have the second lowest reproduction rate of North American land mammals.

Economically, B.C.’s grizzly bear trophy hunt threatens the growing and sustainable wildlife-based tourism industry. Eco-tourism and bear viewing attract thousands of people to B.C. every year and create sustainable employment. There is simply no scientific, ethical or economic rationale for the trophy hunt.

Although the spring season to hunt grizzlies for trophy ended today, the extended fall season begins in two months. As B.C. politicians return to the legislature in exactly one week on June 22nd, the fate of BC's grizzlies is yet to be determined. These bears need your help.

Please sign and share Pacific Wild's petition today to ban the grizzly bear trophy hunt in BC.

Sign here

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Scientists Say Killing Alberta’s Wolves Benefits Industry, Not Endangered Caribou

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In an open letter published in Nature Alberta, scientists contend that killing Alberta’s wolves benefits big industry, not endangered caribou.

Over the past decade, the Alberta government has killed more than 1,000 wolves in its efforts to conserve caribou by employing snipers in helicopters, snares, and strychnine-laced bait to kill wolves (slowly). An elementary principle of ecosystem-based conservation has always been the retention, protection, and restoration of key habitat. Despite this, Alberta is allowing oil and gas operations to continue in critical caribou habitat.


Are Alberta's wolves paying the ultimate price for Alberta's negligence and inaction? What say you?

Read the letter here.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Protect the Last Wild Wolves

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Federal wildlife officials want to hear from you about the fate of the endangered red wolf. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is crafting a revised recovery plan for the red wolf, a process that has been complicated by opposition from some landowners, court cases to stop those landowners from killing the wolves, support from scientists, and conflicting messages from federal officials themselves.

As of June 13, the USFWS has received more than 2,100 comments. The agency is accepting public input through July 24th and red wolves need many more voices to save them from the brink of extinction. Please follow this link to see how you can #StandForWolves.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Enjoy Our Natural World in a Sustainable Way

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Now that the new summer season is upon us, millions of people will be venturing forth in great outdoors - the only home left for our wildlife.

Thus , it's important to remember that we should enjoy our natural world in a sustainable way that avoids human-created impacts. The Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics program reminds us of some guiding principles that have been adapted so that they can be applied in our backyards or the backcountry.

Take a look here.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Don't Give Up On Last Wild Red Wolves

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The red wolf is an American icon. It is one of the few large carnivore species endemic to the United States. Their importance to a balanced and resilient ecosystem is undeniable. Decades of hunting, trapping, and habitat loss pushed wild red wolves towards extinction. In 1980, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) captured the last remaining wild red wolves (the mere 14 animals) and declared the species extinct in the wild. In 1987, red wolves received a second chance on the wild landscape. Captive-bred red wolves were released in North Carolina’s Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species Act.

 
For a while, thanks to sustained federal leadership, the red wolf recovery effort was making steady progress toward recovery in eastern North Carolina. In many ways, the red wolf program was the pilot program, serving as a model for subsequent canid reintroductions, particularly those of the Mexican gray wolf to the American Southwest and the gray wolf to the Yellowstone region.

The wild population peaked at an estimated 130 wolves in 2006 and fluctuated between 130 - 100 for several years thereafter. Since 2014, however, USFWS has failed to follow the best available science, ignored scientific recommendations by halting all key management activity, and took a series of actions that have undermined the red wolf recovery program, including:

  • Eliminated its full time red wolf recovery coordinator position and to re-direct red wolf staff to other programs.
  • Reduced or eliminated efforts to collar and track wild red wolves.
  • Abandoned its scientifically proven coyote placeholder program through which coyotes are captured, sterilized, and returned to the wild to avoid hybridization.
  • Halted all captive-to-wild release events and pup fostering.
  • Issued permits to private landowners to take and kill wolves.
  • Refused to control coyote hunting in the recovery area, and the subsequent loss of red wolves to gunshot.
  • Halted all red wolf education and outreach efforts.

USFWS’s consistent mismanagement and neglect over the past few years has led to a rapid decline in North Carolina's red wolf population. Current estimates put the only wild population of red wolves at just 28, its lowest level in decades.

On September 12, USFWS announced their decision to reduce the wild red wolf population even further.

The agency called for significantly reducing the range of the existing wild population wolves and to remove from private and public lands most of the last wild red wolves to put them in captivity.

Ironically, the federal agency claimed its decision was "based on the best and latest scientific information" from the red wolf Population Viability Analysis (PVA). However, the very scientists who drafted the PVA charge that USFWS based its plan on “many alarming misinterpretations” of their scientific analysis and warn that USFWS's plan “will no doubt result in the extinction of red wolves in the wild.”

USFWS's singular focus on the captive red wolf population will result in the extinction of red wolves in the wild. Unless the Service allows expansion of the current population in North Carolina, resumes work to curtail hybridization with coyotes, and utilizes additional reintroduction sites across the red wolf’s historic range, this iconic predator will exist in captivity alone.

How to take Action:

Last month, USFWS gave notice the start of a 60-day public comment the federal agency's proposed rule. Thus, we now have the opportunity to tell the USFWS, the very agency charged by federal law with protecting endangered species, that it’s unacceptable for them to walk away from red wolf recovery. Please use your unique voice to protect the world’s last wild red wolves. To access detailed information to help support your comments, see the emergency petition to the USFWS to revise the red wolf's 10(j) rule and petition for a new red wolf recovery plan.

Submit Comments Online:

Submit your comment HERE from now until July 24. When you submit your comment, it is important you use your own words.

Submit Comments via Mail:

You may submit comments by mail to the following address:

Public Comments Processing
Attn: FWS–R4–ES–2017–0006
Division of Policy, Performance, and Management Programs
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Headquarters
MS: BPHC
5275 Leesburg Pike
Falls Church, VA 22041–3803

Attend a Public Meeting:

June 6, 2017, 6:30–8:30 p.m. in Swan Quarter, NC
Mattamuskeet High School cafeteria
20392 US–264, Swan Quarter, NC 27885
June 8, 2017, 6:30–8:30 p.m. in Manteo, NC
Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge auditorium
100 Conservation Way, Manteo, NC 27954

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Rare Mexican Wolf Pups Debut on Webcam


A critically endangered Mexican gray wolf living at the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC) made a priceless contribution to the recovery of her rare and at-risk species on Monday – she had pups! On May 22, Mexican gray wolf F1226 (affectionately nicknamed Belle by supporters) gave birth to a litter of three pups – each no larger than a Russet potato. This is the second litter born to mom (age six), and dad, (age nine).

Stashing her pups in a nest among the thick brush, F1226 had been keeping her newborns out of sight. But to the delight of a global audience, the pups debuted via live dencam early this morning!

Beyond being “adorable,” the pocket-sized predators represent the Center’s active participation in an effort to save a species on the brink of extinction.

The WCC is one of more than 50 institutions in the U.S. and Mexico participating in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan – a bi-national initiative whose primary purpose is to support the reestablishment of Mexican wolves in the wild through captive breeding, public education, and research.

Because the entire existing Mexican wolf population descended from just seven founders rescued from extinction, genetic health is the primary consideration governing not only reproductive pairings, but also captive-to-wild release efforts. Although both components are equally critical to Mexican wolf recovery, release events are far less frequent than successful breeding.

In recent positive steps toward recovery, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has been ushering genetically diverse captive wolf pups into the wild through its pup-fostering initiative. Pup-fostering is a coordinated event where captive-born pups are introduced into a similar-aged wild litter so the pups can grow up as wild wolves.

Mexican wolf F1226's newborns were not eligible for wild-foster, the timing of the litter is relatively late compared to wild-born pups.

“Although we hoped pups from our center would receive the ‘call of the wild’,” said Rebecca Bose, WCC Curator. “We’re elated that there have been foster events from other facilities this year! Pup-fostering is an incredibly effective tool for augmenting the genetic health of the wild population.”

“Maybe next year some lobo pups from the WCC will get this amazing opportunity,” said Maggie Howell, WCC Executive Director. “In the meantime, we’re counting on USFWS to continue with releases beyond pup season because recovery demands releasing more family groups into the wild too.”

The wolf parents and pups are not on public exhibit, but thirteen live webcams accessible via the WCC website, invite an unlimited number of viewers to enter the private lives of these elusive creatures.
Tune in now

Monday, May 29, 2017

Wild Salute


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wolf Conservation Center Welcomes Critically Endangered Wolf Pups

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A critically endangered Mexican gray wolf living at the Wolf Conservation Center (WCC) made a priceless contribution to the recovery of her rare and at-risk species on Monday – she had pups! On May 22, Mexican gray wolf F1226 (affectionately nicknamed Belle by supporters) gave birth to a litter of three pups – each no larger than a Russet potato. This is the second litter born to mom (age six), and dad, (age nine).

Although F1226 is currently keeping her newborn pups out of sight, WCC staff anticipates the pups will begin to emerge in a few weeks and be visible to a global audience via live webcams.

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Recognizing the distinct peeps squeaks and mews of newborn wolves, WCC staff followed the pup “chatter” yesterday morning to confirm the pups had arrived!       

"It will be an exciting season," said Rebecca Bose, WCC Curator and member of the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan Management Team. “With parents, newborns, and the pair’s three yearlings born in 2016, we have an opportunity to study the complex social structure of a multigenerational pack. Unbeknown to the wolves, our webcams allow us to observe their behavior 24/7, so it’s easier for us to make the best recommendations with respect to which wolves are most suitable for release.”

Accessible via the WCC website, webcams allow an unlimited number of viewers to enter the private lives of wolves.

“Over 300,000 people tuned in to the webcam last year to watch F1226 in labor,” said Maggie Howell, WCC Executive Director. “These Mexican wolves are really popular on webcam and have been exceptionally effective in demonstrating the importance of family. This is what makes wolves and humans so similar. As the pups and yearlings mature this year, the public will have an opportunity to witness the gestures of intimacy and enthusiasm that form the unique emotional bonds and shape the foundation of the pack.”

Raising pups is a family affair; it is natural for all the wolves to pitch in. The yearlings will assist their parents in rearing their younger siblings by regurgitating food for them, playing with them and even baby-sitting. Moreover, the parents will demonstrate critical parenting strategies and techniques for the yearlings to employ when they have pups of their own.

Passing down knowledge from one generation to the next also allows the family to maintain traditions unique to that pack.

“Hopefully some of these younger wolves will one day be able to apply what they learn today to raise pups of their own in the wild in the future,” said Bose. “So far three of our Mexican wolves have been released – two in Arizona and one in northern Mexico.”

Beyond being adorable, the wolf pups represent the Center’s active participation in an effort to save a species on the brink of extinction. The Mexican gray wolf or “lobo” is the most genetically distinct lineage of wolves in the Western Hemisphere, and one of the most endangered mammals in North America. By the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping, and poisoning caused the extinction of lobos in the wild, with only a handful remaining in captivity. In 1998 the wolves were reintroduced into the wild as part of a federal reintroduction program under the Endangered Species Act.

Because the entire existing Mexican wolf population descended from just seven founders rescued from extinction, genetic health is the primary consideration governing most recovery efforts.

“Addressing the Mexican wolf’s genetic imperilment requires an active program of releasing more genetically diverse wolves into the wild. Currently, the captive population is more diverse than the wild population; we need to capitalize on this with more captive-to-wild release efforts as soon as possible. Mexican wolf recovery cannot exist in captivity alone,” said Bose.

The WCC is one of 55 facilities in the U.S. and Mexico participating in the Mexican Wolf Species Survival Plan – a bi-national initiative whose primary purpose is to support the reestablishment of Mexican wolves in the wild through captive breeding, public education, and research.

Currently 13 Mexican wolves call the WCC home. In the U.S., there is a single wild population comprising only 113 individuals - an increase from the 97 counted at the end of 2015.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Feds Propose Changing Protections for World's Last Wild Red Wolves

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The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is considering changes to the existing protections for the world's last population of wild red wolves. Fewer than 35 remain.

Published this morning, the federal agency's proposed rule intends to revise the existing nonessential experimental population designation of red wolves in North Carolina under section 10(j) of the Endangered Species Act to allow significant changes in the size, scope and management of the current red wolf recovery program.

The rule includes the Service's plan to allow pulling the last wild red wolves from most of their range in North Carolina to put them in captivity. Ironically, the federal agency claimed its decision was "based on the best and latest scientific information" from the red wolf Population Viability Analysis (PVA).

But the very scientists who drafted the PVA charge that USFWS based its plan on “many alarming misinterpretations” of their scientific analysis and warn that USFWS's plan “will no doubt result in the extinction of red wolves in the wild.” In a letter they ask the agency to "edit or append" its decision.

The WCC is is currently reviewing the proposed rule and will be participating during the public comment period. Stay tuned...

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Ambassador Wolf Atka Receives 1000 Emails

Well wishers at yesterday's birthday bash check out Atka's meat-filled piñata moments before the Atka tore it to shreds!
Well wishers at yesterday's birthday bash check out Atka's meat-filled piñata moments before the Atka tore it to shreds!
We wanted to make sure Atka's 15th birthday was special, so after the long, requisite talk about safety, etiquette, and responsibility, we gave him his very own email account at atka@nywolf.org! In a matter of hours, emails with photos, artwork, and wonderful well wishes started arriving at an alarming rate. Nearly 1000 emails filled Atka's inbox - with messages from every continent with the exception of Antarctica! Enormous thanks to all of Atka's wonderful supporters for joining us in celebrating a special wolf. We love you, Atka!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

What Draws Tourists to Yellowstone? Wolves!

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What draws tourists to Yellowstone? A new scientific visitor survey shows the number one draw is wildlife - specifically wolves and grizzly bears! Beyond their value as a critical keystone species, by drawing an abundance of tourists to the park wolves benefit the greater Yellowstone economy too!

National Parks Service (NPS) estimates that wolf watchers bring $35M tourism dollars to the greater Yellowstone area annually. Moreover, a 2013 NPS report shows that 3,188,030 visitors to Yellowstone National Park that year spent almost $382 million in the surrounding communities. That spending supported 5,300 jobs in the area.

Despite the popularity of wolves, many of the park's neighboring communities are avidly anti-wolf and sometimes the more popular the wolf, the bigger target they become. Last month, the 12-year-old matriarch of Yellowstone’s Canyon Pack, was shot by poachers and left to die.

Poachers are not the only threats Yellowstone wolves face. Although hunting is not permitted within the park, wolf trophy hunts are authorized by every state bordering Yellowstone.

Communities surrounding Yellowstone in Wyoming, Montana and Idaho should give greater consideration the economics of wildlife watching. Only then would they would understand that wolves are more valuable alive than dead, and their current policies are indeed killing the "golden goose."

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

It's Ambassador Wolf Atka's 15th Birthday

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Happy Birthday, Atka!

Today Ambassador Wolf Atka turns 15 years old! The confident and charismatic ambassador has opened the hearts and minds of hundreds of thousands of people in his lifetime. He’s a powerful presence in the fight to preserve wolves’ rightful place in the environment, and for the Wolf Conservation Center staff and volunteers, the best boss we’ll ever have. We love you, Atka!

Wish Atka a Happy Birthday - send him an email!

In a world flooded with online communication, at 15 years old Atka decided he should build his digital identity. So, after a the long, requisite discussions about safety, etiquette, and responsibility, WCC staff gave Atka his very own email account! Get in touch with Atka at Atka@nywolf.org!


Monday, May 15, 2017

Yellowstone: A Wild Homecoming

The last wolves in Yellowstone Nation Park were killed nearly a century ago. But with the support of the American public in 1995 and 1996, a new chapter in Yellowstone's history began, with a homecoming that changed the Park.

The reintroduction of gray wolves to our first national park has been described as a near-miracle, having occurred at one of those rare moments when stars align in the political sky. A wildlife conservation effort with such positive environmental impact (and ongoing controversy) will likely go unmatched for a long time.

The following video gives an account of the remarkable effect of wolf reintroduction on Yellowstone's wild landscape.

Learn more about the "wolf effect" in Yellowstone and the ongoing scientific debate inspired by the video.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Happy Mother's Day


Wishing Mexican gray wolf F1226 (a.k.a. Belle)and all the mothers out there a wonderful Mother's Day!