Contact: Bonnie Strawser - 252-473-1131
May 14th, 2008
Red Wolf Update
Photo credits - USFWS
April and May are very exciting months for red wolves - both in the wild and in captivity. It's pup season! This annual occurrence finds Red Wolf Recovery Program, USFWS, wildlife biologists spending many hours in the field, seven days a week, looking for hidden dens over the five counties of Dare, Tyrrell, Hyde, Washington and Beaufort. Radio telemetry collars tell the biologists that there are 18-20 packs in this 1.7 million acres of northeastern North Carolina - the only place in the world where red wolves roam free in a portion of their original home range. So far for the 2008 pup season, the biologists have found 12 litters with 51red wolf puppies. But there could still be more! For the next several weeks, the 5 red wolf wildlife biologists will keep looking. Ideally, the red wolf field crew would like to find 3 or 4 more dens, but this season has already proven to be a "healthy" denning season. During 2007, 2006, and 2005, 31, 44, and 55 pups (respectively) were found among the wild population. The pups shown above are wild pups from a 2008 litter in eastern North Carolina.
Photo credit - USFWS
There are 42 Species Survival Plan captive facilities across the United States that house red wolves. Most of these zoos and natures centers have public viewing facilities and welcome visitors. Many also have web cams located in the dens enabling viewers to watch the activities of red wolf pups and parents. Please visit http://www.fws.gov/redwolf for a list of the captive management facilities and their locations and a plan a visit soon. Further details can be found on their individual web sites.