Mexican gray wolves still struggling to grow population in the wild

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There are currently 114 Mexican gray wolves stalking the southwest, only one more than recorded in 2017, despite conservationist efforts.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service work to tag, measure, treat and vaccinate the wolves in hopes of helping them expand their population. There was half the number of surviving pups this year compared to last year, something the service is hoping to fix.

“We need the data so we can make better decisions going forward for wolf recovery,” says Susan Dicks, a veterinarian with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. “We can make decisions about wolf impacts on humans and livestock and things like that in the environment.”

Those working with the Mexican gray wolf recovery plan have witnessed the population go from zero to over 100, which is no small feat. While the number is still low, they’ve still had significant success helping this species.

They are heading toward a speed bump in their plan. President Donald Trump’s administration finalized a revision to the recovery plan last November. Advocated within the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service are challenging the revision with a lawsuit. They didn’t have anything to comment on the matter.

Susan Dicks: Veterinarian, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
John Oakleaf: Field Projects Coordinator, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Michael Robinson: Center for Biological Diversity

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