More Mexican gray wolves are roaming the American Southwest now than at any time since federal biologists began reintroducing the predators more than two decades ago, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Monday.
Biologists with the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine have declared that the Mexican gray wolf is a valid subspecies. KNAU’s Ryan Heinsius reports, it strengthens the case for keeping the animal’s federally endangered status.
Two endangered Mexican wolves have been removed from the wild and are undergoing testing to determine if they're behind a string of livestock deaths in southwestern New Mexico, marking the latest wrinkle in the strained effort to return the predators to the American Southwest.
Gray wolves in the U.S. would be stripped of federal protection and subject to hunting and trapping in more states under a proposal released Thursday that declares the predators recovered following a decades-long restoration effort.