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. 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.
Rim pack female (AF1305) just prior to capture at Sevilleta Wolf Management Facility in New Mexico and transport for release in Arizona
Photo Courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Pair of Mexican wolves released into the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests
April 22, 2015
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Arizona Game and Fish Department released a pair of Mexican wolves into the Apache-Sitgreaves
National Forests April 22. The female AF 1305) is the Rim Pack breeding female that was taken into captivity in January to be paired with
M1130, a more genetically-diverse male. M1130 was whelped at the California Wolf Center in 2008 and eventually moved to the Service’s
Sevilleta Wolf Management Facility in New Mexico. The wolf pair was observed breeding and biologists believe the female is pregnant.
The pair was released near the Rim Pack’s old territory in Arizona. The Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team conducted a “soft release” of
the pair, meaning the wolves will be held in an enclosure until the animals chew through the fencing and self-release.