Dec 20, 2022
The Whaleback wolf pack has welcomed eight new pups. They live in northern California. Scientists are celebrating their birth. The litter is a symbol of conservation success.
“This is a really great sign of the health of wolves,” a biologist and senior wolf advocate for the Center for Biological Diversity told The Guardian. “The fact that eight pups have made it this far into the year is really exciting.”
The pups are among the first to be born in California in over 100 years. Many gray wolves used to live in the Sierra Madres. Those are mountains in California. The wolves were hunted to extinction in the Golden State in the 1920s. Only recently have packs started to move back. Those packs were first reintroduced by humans in Wyoming’s Yellowstone Park.
Two other wolf packs live in California. Both of those packs have had babies in recent years. The Whaleback litter is the biggest, though. Scientists point to the survival rate of the spring-born pups as a good sign that the predators are there to stay. All eight pups have made it to winter.
Gray wolves are still listed as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act. They face threats from deforestation, wildfires, poachers, and farmers who kill wolves in order to protect livestock. But the Whaleback wolves are living in the remotest parts of the Sierra Madres. That offers hope that they will continue to thrive.
Photo by Milo Weiler courtesy of Unsplash.
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