Red Wolf Births Boost Chances for Species

As spring brought budding trees and new shoots to Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge in North Carolina, it also brought renewed hope for the survival of the red wolf, the most critically endangered canid in the world. In April, Red Wolf Recovery Program staff confirmed the birth of six wild red wolf pups—four females and two males. This litter is the first to be born in the wild since 2018. Starting around 2014, poaching and unlawful changes to the US Fish and Wildlife Service’s once-successful recovery program management caused a drastic decline in the wild red wolf population. Lawsuits by AWI and allies in recent years have spurred management reforms (see AWI Quarterly, spring 2021), and this new litter is a promising, much needed sign for the species’ path to recovery. 

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