The Mexican wolf is the rarest subspecies of gray wolf in North America. Once common throughout portions of the southwestern United States,
the Mexican wolf was all but eliminated from the wild by the 1970s. In 1977, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service initiated efforts to conserve
the species. In 1998, Mexican wolves were released to the wild for the first time in the Blue Range Wolf Recovery Area within the Mexican Wolf
Experimental Population Area. Missing from the landscape for more than 30 years, the howl of the Mexican wolf can once again be heard in the
mountains of the southwestern United States.
Photo Courtesy of the Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team
Alpha Female 903 of the San Mateo pack successfully maintained her alpha status for 11 years
(that's about 4 years longer than the average wild wolf life span)
In 2015, the San Mateo pack entered its' eleventh year of existence in the Mexican Wolf Recovery Area.
In late November, AF903 was found dead in the San Mateo home range, it is believed she was 13 years old
at the time of her death. Prior to her death, AF903 had maintained her alpha status longer than any other
wolf in the population. During her 11 years as alpha female, she produced 9 litters of pups with 7 of
her pups becoming alpha wolves in the population. The production of at least 23 pups resulting in 7 alpha
wolves, places AF903 second only to the current Bluestem AF1042 in overall pup/future alpha production.
During her time as alpha female, 903 proved to be extremely resilient to management actions and the repeated
loss of alpha males. She successfully maintained her pack through two translocation events and the loss of
three alpha males. AF903 produced her last litter in 2014 at the age of 12, producing a single female pup
fp1399. Following the death of AF903, F1399 has become the new alpha female of the San Mateo pack.